Striker O'Brien happy to be Millwall rover

AIDEN O’Brien wants Millwall to begin games as they have been finishing them as he admitted he was exhausted after Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Coventry because he often had to fill in as an auxiliary midfielder.

O’Brien scored Millwall’s equaliser, his third of the season, and joked afterwards he had found it difficult to climb the stairs to the press lounge such was the effort he had put in against the possession-based Sky Blues.

“We need to go from the start, from the first whistle, because once we’re on the front foot and going for it and the fans are on our side, it’s near enough impossible to get the ball around us, to beat us, because we’re so good together as a unit,” O’Brien said.

“On a personal note I’ve got to drop back to the deepest midfielder. If they’ve got the ball the majority of the time and they’re passing, passing, passing, I’ve got to go deeper and deeper. And me being honest as I am I try to help the team out, help the midfield out because they’re overloading it.

“It kind of kills me in a sense because if we do then get the ball I’m not high enough to affect their back four.

“In the second half we pressed them higher up so when we did win the ball we were already in their half to attack, so it was better.”

O’Brien revealed his boss Neil Harris praised his finish on Saturday, when he flicked Steve Morison’s cross to the near post first-time past Reice Charles-Cook.

He said: “We always do finishing drills on Fridays, Thursdays, and one of those runs will always come up. The likes of Lee Gregory does it all the time, that’s his natural run.

“I like to float around the box but (Saturday) I was staying in the box as much as I could and being a nuisance. I got across my man and he didn’t have a clue I was there. I was pleased with it and the gaffer was as well.

“I played as a striker U21, U19 for Ireland, scored goals there and here for Millwall as a striker. I’m naturally a striker but I can adapt and play in all sorts of positions. That forward run is all natural for us strikers, we don’t think, we just do it and the majority of the time we’re quicker than the centre-halves because we know before it happens.”

Image source: ©Millwall FC

John Kelly