NEIL HARRIS is pleased to have the experience of midfielder Jimmy Abdou to call on over a busy Christmas period when Millwall will play three games in nine days, starting with Gillingham at The Den this Saturday.
Abdou, 31, hasn’t started in a senior Lions shirt since suffering serious damage to his collarbone in early October.
But he played the full 90 minutes in the U21 side’s 1-0 win at Watford last Monday and Harris is happy with his progress.
“He came through okay and he did well,” Harris said. “He travelled to Oldham last weekend and he’s certainly in my thinking this Saturday.
“With the amount of games we have in a short space of time over the Christmas period and also with the sustained run in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, Jimmy being back in the squad is a real bonus and a welcome addition.
“The players who have been playing have done really well but every manager would love to have a player of Jimmy’s athleticism and quality available.”
Meanwhile, it could be after this run of games before the futures of on-loan duo George Saville and Shane Ferguson are known.
Harris would like Wolves and Newcastle to extend the deals, but said he understands the positions those clubs are in.
He explained: “We’ve got players out on loan and the idea was to give them experience and games that they’re not getting at their parent club, so Newcastle are exactly the same. Sometimes it’s not a decision that can be made weeks or months in advance.
“Sometimes you want to see how your squad is shaping up prior to a renewal date, so those clubs are doing the same. They’re going to wait until after the Christmas period to see the size of their squads and if everyone’s fit and available before deciding whether they’re going to be extending their loans.
“Both players have done well for us and been good additions to our squad, they’ve made us a better squad. We’ll weigh everything up at the turn of the year and see their availability before seeing if they’ll be staying with us.”