Exclusive: Millwall expected to complete deal for defender

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MILLWALL are set to complete a deal for defender Joe Martin.

The 26-year left-back is believed to have passed a medical and agreed personal terms with the Lions as Neil Harris continues to shape his squad for next season.

Martin, who made 161 league appearances and scored eight goals for the Gills, is out of contract after five seasons at the club.

He joined from Blackpool in 2010 and was named in the 2012-13 League Two team of the season as Gillingham won promotion.

He is the son of the former West Ham player, Alvin, and his brother David is a goalkeeper with MK Dons.

Martin will also add another dimension to Millwall’s set-piece options, having developed a reputation as a quality striker of a dead ball.

Manager Neil Harris has made signing a left-back and striker a priority and NewsAtDen understands that the first part of that plan is now in place.

The club are also expected to approach Bradford again with an improved offer for target man James Hanson.

But that potential deal is slightly complicated by the stalled takeover talks at Bradford.

John Kelly

(@jkelly1882)

104 thoughts on “Exclusive: Millwall expected to complete deal for defender

  • June 5, 2015 at 08:10
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    Hmmm, will reserve judgement on this one. Why would the Gills be letting his contract run out? Unless he didn't want to resign as he get can more money elsewhere. Still, it's a hole filled and in Bomber I trust!

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    • June 5, 2015 at 09:06
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      @dobbers22: I think you answered your own question there Dobber, he probably saw a chance to move to a bigger club and didn't re sign

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      • June 5, 2015 at 09:21
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        @glyngo: Hope that was the case mate! As opposed to Gills not thinking he is good enough :/

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        • June 5, 2015 at 09:27
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          @dobbers22: wouldn't worry about that, could be many reasons why a player is released. Millwall probably approached Gillingham and Martin said he wants to go.

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        • June 5, 2015 at 13:56
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          @dobbers22: Some Gils fans below beg to differ however, seems they may have let him go, but who knows, that could be sour grapes.

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          • June 5, 2015 at 14:16
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            We 100% let him go, he got injured from January quite frequently but even when fit he couldn't get in the team ahead of Amari'i Bell and Bradley Garmston.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 08:18
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    Good news. In my opinion, we have not had a decent dead ball specialist since we sold Henry to Wolves. Hopefully this means less free kicks being sent ridiculously high and wide. (remember Fuller's shot that was so laughably bad)

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  • June 5, 2015 at 08:23
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    Have heard of his old man.(scum)..have heard of his bruv bloody good keeper.never heard of him .but at 26yrs old can only get better.shame he cant have a word with his brother

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    • June 5, 2015 at 09:07
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      @Jim28: Alvin was one tough b******, he would've fitted in down the Den both old and New

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  • June 5, 2015 at 08:43
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    Is Dean Martin still available?

    Italians are good full backs.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 08:53
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    Welcome to Millwall Joe.
    Time will tell how good he is but this is certainly IMO the type of signing we should be making. As we are all fed up of ageing wage thiefs.
    With Alvin being his father, we may now even receive a fairer coverage on Talksport but I will believe that when I hear it.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:09
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    Specialist left back with experience at that level and best years ahead of him, what's not to like?

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:16
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    Can play in midfield as well East London lad was at West Ham and Tottenham not a bad signing out of contract so cheap welcome joe let's hope you got more balls than that forest coward harding

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:22
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    My boss is West Ham and talks about Alvin Martin a lot; always raving about Joe and David as well about how they should be Championship players.

    I've seen him play quite a bit for Gillingham and think he's quality. Very solid and reliable with great knowledge of the league which is what we need. Good age as well so the type of player we should be signing.

    I wouldn't bother with Hanson, Bradford want too much for him. I'd go for Andy Williams any day, much more mobile and scored nearly double the amount Hanson did this season. He's on a free as well which I'm sure Ambler will like!

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    • June 6, 2015 at 19:04
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      @slb.: I agree, Andy Williams is also a better singer! COYL!!

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:33
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    Welcome joe I'm sure your old man had plenty to say about us how wonderful we all are and how well behaved we all are
    I bet he relished every game against us a proper derby no holds barred ect ect.
    Knuckle down and give your all and you'll absolutely love it.
    Good decision joe.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:51
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    I've noticed he's already been deleted from the Pikey squad on their website. Not sure why if he's such a good striker of a dead ball has he only scored eight goals in five years? Anyway Joe, you'll be fine here, just give us 100% every game and if you can contribute with the odd goal or two in a season that would be great.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:56
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    I'd still expect another LB, as Harris said he wants 2 players for each position.. Unless he fancies Romeo's chances as back-up

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    • June 5, 2015 at 10:27
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      @Josh: So a left back with experience but do think we need some young promising cover who can push him for his place & look to break through?
      On paper not majorly inspiring but if we do pick up another prospect could be a wise move?
      His old man could play so let's hope he has some of his quality about him, I'd say we're a great career move for him so let's hope he gives it everything he's got!

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  • June 5, 2015 at 09:57
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    I'm surprised, he is a very good defender, just what we need.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 10:15
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    Out of contract at Gillingham and they didn't offer him a new one but sounds like he told them he wouldn't be signing one anyway.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 10:16
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    Coming from a Gills fan, a very good L2 defender but a very average L1 defender. Was not offered a new deal because he wasn't good enough and lost his place to better loanees last season. Dead ball specialist? Hmm, scored a couple.

    Think Romeo is a decent signing for you and disappointed we didn't keep him.

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    • June 5, 2015 at 12:09
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      @jim_gills: We're good at turning L1 players into L2 players Jim, so he'll fit right in!

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  • June 5, 2015 at 10:22
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    Sounds decent, but I'm gonna trust Harris on this signing COYL!!!

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  • June 5, 2015 at 10:46
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    Another Gills fan here, you can do much better, we happily released him and are trying to sign someone much better in Bradley Garmston. Dead ball specialist is very kind, scored about 4 free kicks in as many years. Defensively will get found, prone to an error and isn't that fast. I'd be underwhelmed if I where you.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 10:52
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    My next door Neighbour is a Gills supporter he said Martin was a good defender a few seasons back but seems to have lost his way a little I know they looked like playoff candidates a couple of times mid season then went backwards so after 5 years maybe a new challenge is just what he needs , plus 26 is hardly old welcome to the Lions Joe .

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    • June 5, 2015 at 10:58
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      A good defender in League 2, he missed a large part of the second half of the season which coincided with us climbing the table.

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        • June 5, 2015 at 13:53
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          I think your neighbour would agree that he isn't good enough for you, he wasn't good enough for us and you have realistic aims of promotion. It wouldn't be a good signing, i'm not saying that as a disgruntled pikey, it is the truth. If we didn't want him, why would you? You can do better.

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          • June 5, 2015 at 18:10
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            Maybe Jack you should watch some footage of our back four last season we were terrible we made poor teams look good up front I can only hope in the nicest possible way that your wrong Mr @Jack The Gill:

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  • June 5, 2015 at 11:01
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    millwall are a scummy team! come on pompey! @mattbacon

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  • June 5, 2015 at 11:41
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    Seen him a couple of times on tv good in the box at set pieces looks a solid defender probably wanted to get out of gillingham & come to a proper club. So welcome to millwall now let's get a striker in soon so all the signings can bed in coyl

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    • June 5, 2015 at 11:48
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      I can assure you he was released....

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  • June 5, 2015 at 12:02
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    I asked a good friend of mine who is a Gill's season ticket holder what he thought of him.
    " Defending is not his strong point " was his answer.
    Doesn't feel me with much confidence.

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    • June 5, 2015 at 12:41
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      Maybe Harris has seen his potential as a 20 goals a season striker in Bomber & Dave we trust @wall2wall:

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  • June 5, 2015 at 12:36
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    Can't imagine Harris signing the player without speaking to Marquis and Romeo as all were together last season. Shaun Cummings is also very capable at left back.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 12:40
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    Not too inspired by this signing on the face of it - gill's fans don't seem to fancy him. Mind you, most of us didn't fancy Feeney.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 12:43
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    My best mate is a Gills fan, and he sent me the following email:

    Short of pace, and he gets more than his fair share of bookings as a result of getting caught out against tricky wingers. Better going forward than he is defensively, although his distribution is a bit suspect. Good solid League 2 player, who has regressed since we have been in League 1, and most fans were happy to see him released.

    Doesn't sound the most inspiring signing, but will give Bomber the benefit of the doubt.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 13:17
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    short of pace - gets booked - sounds familiar -

    comes recommended by John Marquis

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  • June 5, 2015 at 13:34
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    I hear that Forde is off to Fulham. No nothing about Martin so will reserve judgement.
    As for Hanson, I think we can do better than that.

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    • June 5, 2015 at 18:52
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      @NICKOLA: nick i m in training scored 3 beaut headed goals against one of my grandsons (6) in goal in my garden the cardboard cut out of neil harris full size was impressed with a fixed smile.

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        • June 7, 2015 at 14:50
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          @scottwall: where are you based fellow lion and what is the nature of work i.e. walling ,extension ?i may be able to help as i have a few on the books

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  • June 5, 2015 at 13:42
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    HOLLOWAY released Martin in 2010 when he was Blackpool manager, so we will probably find he's a decent player.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 14:04
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    Good left backs always seem to be rare don't they?

    I remember being similarly uninspired when we signed Robbie Ryan from Huddersfield, I think even he'd admit that he wasn't blessed with great pace and had his faults defensively but that boy could graft and what a great servant he turned out to be, you never know this could turn out similarly and who better to judge against members of that great squad Ryan was part of than Harris so let's trust him on this one.

    Ryan works for the London Underground apparently now, scant reward for starring in one of our best teams of recent years eh?

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  • June 5, 2015 at 14:59
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    I hope the bloke does well,but i am starting to worry that the club are continuing the policy of recruiting players rejected by teams around us.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 15:04
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    The best left back I've seen for us in my time was IAN DAWS. Had no pace but what an absolute class act for years, a top defender. I love players that are rapid but if you have other attributes it can make up for a lack of pace. Sherringham, Moore , kouman, just to name three all slow but what players eh.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 15:27
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    Let's be positive this is the start of Harris team two posts have already stated that u don't need pace if u have a good brain. Dawes. Ryan. Edwards robo rhino musket & dunne all done well for us. Milllllllllll

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    • June 5, 2015 at 15:59
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      @block 28: Can not agree with your last choice 28 but the others yes I do agree with you on them.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 16:21
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    Welcome 2 our beloved MILLWALL joe best of luck set your eyes on the prize Promotion COYL

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  • June 5, 2015 at 16:27
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    I really can't understand why when we sign a player our fans tend to turn into professional scouts who know everything about the incoming players!

    I know very little about this guy and I have asked a couple of my friends who are Gillingham season ticket holders about him and yes he does come with mixed reviews from them but that doesn't automatically mean he's going to be no good and perhaps a change of club/management might be what he needed!

    Lets just see him live and make our own minds up before being all doom and gloom eh?

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    • June 5, 2015 at 20:42
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      @spj91: well said! The boy is coming here cos he thinks we can make something of him! Martin might have played for the scum, but he must have thought it was a good move for his son! I think if they are in the same mild then we might have a cracker on our hands! A couple of years ago two players swap clubs for 85 million to clubs that took a bath on the fees! Torres and carol! Its about the club the fans the management! So forget what the pikey supporters are saying! Clean slate with a club who will support all the players! Good and bad games!!! COYL

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  • June 5, 2015 at 16:55
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    Why would any player want to come to a club who's fans think he's sh.ite before he evens puts his boots on? Give the lad a chance. I remember a lot of people saying Briggs was good last year, and see where that got us. If Bomber likes him who are we to say otherwise, or are we now questioning his judgement?

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  • June 5, 2015 at 17:15
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    Ex gillingham , its called cutting your cloth its what we have to expect so we need to get used to it.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 18:12
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    Just read again that Forde can go for free after relegation.
    I reckon the donuts put a free if relegated clause in.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 18:35
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    Without opinions life would be boring i don't know why people get upset because you say what u think. Might not agree with everyone but that's football

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  • June 5, 2015 at 18:36
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    Without opinions life would be boring i don't know why people get upset because you say what u think. Might not agree with everyone but that's football millwallfc fans are no different we say what we think and the players club know that's it's in our DNA. If you don't like it I dont care

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  • June 5, 2015 at 20:52
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    One thing in the lad's favour my wife reckon's he is a lot better looking than his dad.

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  • June 5, 2015 at 22:37
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    @ SCOTTWALL : yes mate KENNY CUNNINGHAM was a super player but I was talking about a left back when I mentioned IAN DAWS, Cunningham was a right back. Thatcher for me was a decent left back yes but his crosses were always over hit and he was a thug with not a lot of class, not in daws's league. Just my opinion, others will have theirs. My point was lack of pace doesn't mean you are not any good as it didn't stop DAWSY being first class, not sure what your point was writing two names, one a right back the other a bully.

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  • June 6, 2015 at 00:04
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    Gillingham fan told me he's average.... As for Hanson Bradford fans stating they would pay for his taxi....

    I remember a few of our lot saying the same thing about Grabban when he went....

    Let's hope they get it right and let's hope he has been chosen by Harris.... But was Harris out scouting Gillingham players the past few seasons or looking after our youth? Let's hope he's not being poorly advised.

    Looking forward to next season though COYL!!!

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    • June 6, 2015 at 11:06
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      @JONO:

      whilst quality is important, it is a team game and the reality is that a well drilled squad can compete successfully in this league with a little bit of extra quality here and there - so many players at this level are pretty equal in ability and so it is about getting the best from them and improving them -

      Posters write as if ability and performances are set in stone ,Hanson is this good , Martin is that good, when actually good coaches can changes things dramatically - All players can run a bit faster , read play a bit better etc with the right instruction/training . One interesting case study in this is Powell - he has attributes that could make him a good player, his passing and ball striking is natural and he is mobile but lacks just an ounce of pace, but his understanding of how to hold a position and read the game is not developed enough to make him a first team player - So some quite minor development would make him a valuable player to us , but will it happen - I am hopeful.

      We live in age when too many clubs want to buy players in ready made for lots of money and they think they are the finished article - even in the Prem you see players with obvious weaknesses , but why would feel that you need to change when you are on £50,000 a week - that's why we get these comments about how good players are or aren't - Of course no amount of coaching will turn Hanson into Messi but 5% -10% can make him effective at L1 so why not - we want players who are hungry to learn and improve, that's how you win , not in the Alan Dunne or Shitu school of being Millwall

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      • June 6, 2015 at 19:01
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        @timchimes: very true mate, that's why I have not made judgement, let's hope we get these right because our scouting has not been very successful... Let's hope our coaches get the true best out of these players. I agree we need to spot players qualities early and hungry, but I would rather a fast skillful unfinished article than a slow lump unfinished article.

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  • June 6, 2015 at 01:05
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    Harris ain't bringing in people to fill gaps...he's bringing people in he believes will strengthen the squad and if nobody had belief in what is is doing there's no point him being there....whatever deal he makes he must be doing it with the knowledge of knowing what you need for league 1.....you don't need big name signings in this league you need players who are hungry and ready to give 110% for the team and the fans.....the best signing this year wud be fans showing up and making it hell for everyone bod that shows up thinking they better support but when the den is filled out people's ars*ho*les full out and wanna get the next train home asap

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  • June 6, 2015 at 11:19
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    According to the Daily Mirror, Ipswich want Dunne as he will be out of contract.

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  • June 6, 2015 at 13:04
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    Martin is supposed to be a left back - primarily a defender - BUT HE CANT DEFEND - that is why the Gills have mugged us off with him

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  • June 6, 2015 at 13:09
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    Anyone else not as optimistic as the rest here? I just thought about last season when Harris took over, we weren't playing great football then. Yes we've got rid of 18 players but can we please replace some of them with quality ball players and not play long ball this year. Trying to sign Hanson suggests to me that NH's plan will be long ball which worries me a bit.

    As for Joe, he seems like a squad player from what I've heard of him. Would have preferred a bit of pace in our full back positions to frighten these League 1 journeymen defenders going forward! Direct running will be key in all attacking positions this year. Fabbrini, Gueye and most importantly O'Brien did that last season and it was very promising!

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  • June 6, 2015 at 15:06
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    Maybe he is getting the back up LB first, an average L1 player who can do a job when required and the young dynamic decent 22 year old first choice LB is on holiday waiting to sign

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  • June 6, 2015 at 17:35
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    Hi let forde go to fulham and we can do a deal with Smith because Fulham dont wont him cheers

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  • June 6, 2015 at 19:06
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    Why are we continuing to have this association with vermin? Don't want their players, coaches, managers, staff or bloody fruit stall holders! Alvin Martin's son?? There must be loads of decent left backs we could attract to the Den who possess a bit of penache. No more claret & blue PLEASE Millwall for God's sake!

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  • June 6, 2015 at 19:41
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    Would you say that if we were signing Messi and he was a former west ham player? Probably not. It does not matter where a player has been before or who he supports. If we got a player from west ham and he scored 50 goals and got us promoted would you say that he is no good or that it dont count cause he played for that mob. Players do this for a living not to be loved by fans but if they perform and the love comes then they like anyone would lap it up. Think about it ffs.

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    • June 7, 2015 at 08:13
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      @LETEMCOME: Agree with you 100%,get fed up with the West Ham thing supported Millwall for 57 years ,who they played for before does not matter remember Cripps,Burnett,Obeney and I think Hurlock was there as a youngster might be wrong lets get Millwall players wherever they come from

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    • June 7, 2015 at 23:39
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      @LETEMCOME: Too right, don't forget former Hammer Roger Cross who served our club well

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  • June 6, 2015 at 20:47
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    Hello Gang .. Can anyone tell me what they think Neil first team might be.. I don't have a scooby doo.

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  • June 7, 2015 at 16:51
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    I would like to know if we have introduced a wage cap to suit league 1 like we did before in League 1?

    Maybe we are trying to create a squad of fairly experienced players who would not command a big weekly wage. This would see us meet financial fair play.

    I would be interested to really know if these players are genuine targets or all that's get able on a reasonable wage?

    By no means do I think this is negative though because like with Bournemouth it works with a hungry well coached squad... Then if Harris gets them playing solid invest in a Skipper and Goal scorer.

    We need Someone up and coming who's fast and skilful not a big slow lump...

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  • June 7, 2015 at 18:53
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    Could not resist the 100th post on this subject. Nuffink else to say on this thread except fixtures come out in just over a weeks time - ALL CHANGE ALIGHT AT CREWE FOR DIVISION ONE MATCH YOU CAN WATCH THE HIGHLIGHTS ON THE FOOTBALL LEAGUE SHOW.........yep progress the new dawn - can't wait. GROUND SHARE BROMLEY HERE WE COME ............watch this space. The next big story to come out not the FIFA one MILLWALL have serious debts and will fold. Ground and area regeneration deal worth billions follows and as they say the rest is history. Get on Teddy's Stevenage to get promotion he will get lots of WEST HAM on loan. Oh yes MALTA to beat Lithuania or draw two single bets - you heard it first here.....be lucky. PS it's tomorrow early KO.

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  • June 10, 2015 at 19:00
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    Got a mate who's pally with one of gills players watched him majority of last season said he's s***
    http://fansonline.net/gillingham/mb/view.php?id=253496 gills don't rate him high either.

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