NEIL Harris revealed that Ben Thompson has been doing extra work on the training pitch as he tries to impress to work his way into first-team contention.
Thompson, 22, made his first league appearance of the season – his debut in the Championship – as a 64th-minute substitute for Aiden O’Brien in the 1-0 defeat to Burton last Saturday.
The midfielder, who played 47 times last season, has been down the pecking order this season after the summer arrivals of George Saville and Ryan Tunnicliffe and the form of Shaun Williams before his knee injury.
Harris praised Thompson’s attitude after his appearance last weekend.
“I don’t have to motivate Ben Thompson, not in a Millwall training shirt and Millwall kit,” Harris said. “He’s a great pro for such a young man, he has huge desire.
“He understands fully that it’s a competitive squad and the fact that George Saville has been outstanding and Ryan Tunnicliffe has grabbed his opportunity very well. Shaun Williams was in outstanding form, the best of his career, before he got injured.
“Thommo is looking at it and saying, ‘I want to be there, I want to be as good as them’. He’s done extra work every day, Jake Cooper when he wasn’t in the team was doing extra work every day, Tony Craig is doing extra work every day, Mahlon Romeo the same.
“They are all trying to strive to make sure when their opportunity comes they grab it with both hands.
“Ben gave us exactly what we wanted the other day, legs in midfield playing three in there. He gave us drive.
“When Ben’s opportunity comes he needs to be ready to grab it. He can’t do any more than he is doing at the moment to make sure that’s the case.”
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