Harris: Millwall were the better team despite Bolton defeat

© Millwall FC
© Millwall FC

NEIL Harris was encouraged by Millwall's performance against Bolton despite their 2-0 defeat at the Macron Stadium.

Harris was taking charge of the Lions for the first time since being installed as the club's interim manager but Adam Le Fondre's brace gave the hosts victory.

Lee Gregory and Aiden O'Brien both missed one-on-ones as the Lions, despite a much-improved performance, fell to their fifth straight defeat.

But Harris, assessing his managerial debut, said: "There were loads of positives.

"Firstly, I'm disappointed we got beat but the positives were the chances we created, the manner in which we played and the fact we had a right good go in the second half.

"I asked the boys at half time to be disappointed with the scoreline but not despondent or too down because I wanted a big second half from them.

"Barring the fact that we didn't get on the scoresheet, I thought we were certainly the much better team in the second half.

"Adam Le Fondre scores two good goals, whereas Aiden and Lee didn't score.

"The moves to get them in were both really good and they've both hit the target, but obviously at least one of them should be going in the net.

"For most of the game we were the better team and we had the better chances. The fans stayed at the end to clap the players off and that's a huge turning point for the boys."

Harris' first team selection showed four changes from the previous week's 4-1 loss to Norwich, as well as a more straightforward formation.

He added: "We weren't naive enough to think that we could turn up after a couple days' work and be the finished article – anyone that thinks that is a long way off the mark.

"There are going to be grey areas and personnel changes over the coming weeks but 4-4-2 was the way we wanted to play against Bolton.

"There were no preconceived ideas when we started training on Tuesday – I gave the players the opportunity to impress and saw a lot of positives in the group."

Defeat leaves the Lions nine points from safety ahead of Tuesday's home clash with Brighton.

"We're in a difficult position," said Harris. "There are no promises being made about what we're going to do until the end of the season.

"The target is to win a game as quickly as possible and see where it takes us. We can only go one game at a time and try to improve on recent defeats.

"There's been a lot of negativity at the club, mainly because of results.

"Ian Holloway worked his socks off to drag us out of it, it hasn't quite happened and I think the players have felt the negativity on the pitch.

"I've told them to express themselves and play. It's important for the future of the club that we compete and play in the right manner for the next nine games."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

86 thoughts on “Harris: Millwall were the better team despite Bolton defeat

  • March 14, 2015 at 18:12
    Permalink

    yes but two bad goals defensively - I would have liked to heard that addressed - no comment on that is not a god sign - we need someone who has an answer to goals conceded - it wont happen by accident

    Like (26)
    Dislike (3)
    • March 14, 2015 at 18:18
      Permalink

      @timchimes: or in a week

      Like (11)
      Dislike (1)
      • March 14, 2015 at 18:37
        Permalink

        @lion.ie:

        that is not my point as you well know - good managers identify weaknesses early - it is not as if Harris has just jetted in from Siberia, he knows these players

        ultimately we lost and he said we were the better team - well I don't want to hear that because that is what Holloway said - we weren't the better team; they scored 2 and we scored nil - I want him to say we weren't good enough in these areas and do something about it - what difference does it make if he was a good player for us ??

        Like (27)
        Dislike (25)
        • March 14, 2015 at 19:05
          Permalink

          @timchimes: I think the point he has made is that they have Adam Le Fondre and we don't. I haven't seen the goals yet so will reserve judgement, unlike some others on here who are already pointing fingers, but we have been conceding all season and Harris does not have the luxury of shoring up the defence to play for draws in our position with 10 games left (now nine). He needs to find an attacking threat and unfortunately with the personnel he has inherited this will carry risks of continuing to concede. What would be disappointing is if we continue to concede multiple goals from set-pieces because any decent coach should be able to correct this quickly. We were the 'better team' for periods under Holloway but didn't create much and folded if we conceded. That seems to have already improved and his comments reflect that, albeit the result remained the same. Give the fella a chance Tim, he may not be good enough, but one game in and there is already criticism. The 'experienced' Holloway still has supporters after a dismal reign of 62 games.

          Like (38)
          Dislike (1)
          • March 14, 2015 at 19:40
            Permalink

            @lion.ie:

            I agree with you - I am not on his case about the performance because I didn't see it - nor do I expect him to save us - I was commenting on the remarks made by managers after games - the smart ones say smart things - personally I want mangers when we have lost to say that we did some things well but the most important things we did wrong ( they scored goals perhaps they shouldn't have and we didn't create enough chances)
            You often hear under pressure managers say 'we go again' that is a sure fire bet that they don't have any answers - what, go again in the same way and lose again - I want mangers who learn from the experience - perhaps Harris will prove good at that ; time will tell - We have heard about the positives for 2 years

            Like (7)
            Dislike (0)
        • March 15, 2015 at 09:46
          Permalink

          @timchimes: I was not at the match so cannot have an opinion based on first hand experience.
          However, I do not think that NH is a bullshitter.... So if he says we were the better team.... That isgood enough for me.
          Sometimes you lose when you are the better team, sometimes you win when you are not.... As long as NH is happy with the performance, at this moment in time that is good enough.
          He has best of intentions for the club...... End of

          Like (4)
          Dislike (0)
    • March 15, 2015 at 09:46
      Permalink

      @timchimes: the first goal maybe but the second was a screamer that was worthy of any premiership striker

      Like (4)
      Dislike (0)
      • March 16, 2015 at 11:21
        Permalink

        @Geoff the lion: Great strike yes, but he had so much time, as Dunne stood off him, he could do what he liked.

        Like (1)
        Dislike (0)
    • March 15, 2015 at 15:57
      Permalink

      whoever thinks that not highlighting the mistakes at the back which led to the goals is a bad thing then they obviously don't understand football. At the moment all we need is for the players to feel confident and that's going to come from the manager and the fans, therefore you can't publicly blame a player for the goal, hence the reason why NH has not mentioned it and is focusing on one game at a time.

      Like (0)
      Dislike (0)
  • March 14, 2015 at 18:13
    Permalink

    # Harris out 🙂

    Like (39)
    Dislike (33)
    • March 14, 2015 at 18:55
      Permalink

      @DanmillwallB: Whatever happened to the Millwall sense of humour?

      Like (19)
      Dislike (3)
      • March 14, 2015 at 19:21
        Permalink

        @Micky Lions: I don't think everyone realised the smiley face means I'm joking. Never mind I'll just chuckle to myself

        Like (27)
        Dislike (2)
        • March 14, 2015 at 23:37
          Permalink

          @DanmillwallB: dont worry about it dan, theres some humourless t****** on this site

          Like (5)
          Dislike (2)

You must have an active subscription to view further comments and leave your own.