STEVE Lomas has confirmed he wants to sign loan star Martyn Waghorn on a permanent basis in January.
Waghorn, who scored his second Millwall goal in the defeat to Bournemouth last Saturday, has been an instant hit at The Den – with Lomas describing him as "a breath of fresh air."
And the Lions boss is determined to convince the Leicester City striker that his long-term future lies in south London when the transfer window opens again in the New Year.
"Hopefully we can get Waggy signed up and he can stay," Lomas said. "He's only 23 and I feel he can really kick on by playing regularly with us.
"Ideally you want to bring in players who are in their mid-20s because they've got a long lifespan with you. You don't want to take a short-term view to all of your transfers, you want to look further ahead, even though that's not always possible.
"Waggy has realised what the fans are all about here and if he gives it everything, they'll love him. If he gives it everything and he scores goals, they'll love him even more.
"He has done well and there is more to come from him. He's had a year-and-a-half where he has barely played football, so I think he can get fitter and sharper as well. He can play up front and out wide, so that's a bonus for us. He's a flexible prednisone forward.
"He is a good lad, he's hungry, he wants to learn and he wants to get better. That's the type of player we want here. He's been a breath of fresh air to be honest."
January will be Leicester's final opportunity to cash in on Waghorn, who will be out-of-contract next June and able to join a rival club on a free transfer unless they agree to a sale.
Blackburn, Wolves and Barnsley have previously expressed an interest in the former England U21 international, but Millwall are leading the chase for his signature and the club's board will back a move to land him.
Meanwhile, Lomas will this week make a decision on trialist Stephen Hunt. The ex-Wolves winger has been training with the Lions for the past two weeks and could be offered terms.
"In an ideal world, you don't want to be bringing in players on short-term deals or loans – but that's the hand we've been dealt," Lomas said.
"We're trying to move things about and make things happen within budget. Stephen will probably be with us until the end of the week and then we'll have a look at the situation."
Brokering a deal with Hunt could be made easier by the fact that he and Lomas share the same agent. "He will try to get the best deal for his client and we will do what is best for the club," Lomas said.