DAVID FORDE has admitted he wasn’t happy when he was dropped by his former team-mate Neil Harris this season – but he understood the reasons for his manager’s decision.
Forde lost his place in the side to Jordan Archer in August and has started just one game since, in the first round of the FA Cup against AFC Fylde.
Asked if he was disappointed about being left out of the side with Archer taking the number one jersey, he said: “Absolutely, but that’s football and it’s given me an opportunity and chance to reflect. I’ve played a lot of football in the last seven or eight years, 333 games played for Millwall.
“I understand football, I understand the situation I’m in at the moment but I’ve had the opportunity to rest physically, mentally and emotionally.
“I’m starting to get back to the level I feel I was at. It’s just a natural cycle, it’s hard to maintain that level of consistency for such a long period of time, with international football as well.
“Reflecting on it now, at the time when it initially happens you’re not best pleased but as time goes by you do start to see the bigger picture.
“I think it’s about a level of maturity and how people accept these things. We’ve had a great relationship for many years, Neil and myself, and I said to him I wasn’t happy with his decision but I understood where he was coming from and I’m here to help Millwall.
“I’ve been here a long time and that’s where I stand.”
Archer, 22, has spoken about Forde’s positive effect on his development this season, but the Republic of Ireland player shrugs off any praise and says his tutoring role doesn’t necessarily mean he’s thinking of a career in coaching at the moment.
“That’s just me as a person,” he said. “I’ve still got many years left in me playing and I haven’t really thought about going down that route yet.
“I’m still in peak physical condition.”