Injury could complicate Millwall defender deal

BYRON Webster's long-term injury could cast doubt on his Millwall future.

Webster, 30, is out of contract next summer and is unlikely to play again this season after surgery on a cruciate ligament injury he sustained in the last league game against Barnsley.

That makes discussions on a contract extension less straightforward, and Lions boss Neil Harris believes his family situation could also be a factor in where he plays his football next season.

Webster’s partner and their two children, as well as his parents, live in Leeds and he visits them whenever his Millwall schedule allows.

Sheffield United were interested in signing Webster in the summer of 2016, and despite his injury there is sure to be more interest from clubs wanting to take him back up north next summer.

Webster is likely to be open to offers to return closer to his young family, especially if he is in doubt whether a new deal will be forthcoming from Millwall.

Harris insisted that Webster’s immediate focus would be on his recovery, but conceded the injury does complicate contract issues.

“It’s one where we will have to sit tight for a couple of months, assess how his recovery is going,” Harris said. “There’s a lot that goes into the equation with things like this.

“Byron is a long way from his family so from a player perspective he has to consider that. For us and for Byron he just has to get on the road to recovery.

“He’s got a lot going on in his mind at the moment, thinking about getting to training every morning, getting home again with lifts, and getting to see the family.

“We’ll let him take one step at a time.

“We’ll reassess come January and look at when he might make it back. Will he make it back before the end of the season? We’d love to have him back on the training pitch before the end of the season. It’s a long shot, but that’s got to be his realistic target, his goal. To get him back playing before then would be a miracle recovery.

“To get him back on the training pitch running and touching the ball would be a real bonus.”

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly