Harris: 'Millwall have earned the right to dream'

NEIL Harris admitted he mentioned the play-offs to his players for the first time this season after their 1-0 win over Brentford on Saturday.

The Lions are six points off sixth after George Saville scored inside a minute for the second successive game.

Millwall are unbeaten in 11 league games and have nine more fixtures to try to bridge the gap.

Harris dismissed the notion that the heightening of expectations to achieve a play-off place will affect his players.

"There is no danger of that at the moment, I don't sense that at all," Harris said. "I think everyone is just riding the wave at the moment.

"There are a lot of teams around us and above us that need to be in that top six because of the money they have spent and the size of the clubs.

"We don't. We're doing it because we're enjoying it and we're dreaming of doing it. We are enjoying the challenge and we're attacking the challenge.

"The only reason I'm talking about the play-offs now is because the players have earned the right on the back of today. Do I expect us to get there? No, there is still a long way to go and we've got to make up six points in nine games.

"What I do know is that no club wants to face Millwall home or away. We've got to enjoy that.

"You don't get many moments in your career where you get seasons like we're having at the moment when you're so overachieving that you can just enjoy it.

"It was a big game today, Brentford just above us with that game in hand and if they had beaten us we would have been completely out of the play-offs because teams would have been away from us.

"At the moment we've closed that gap and we've got teams above us as well that we can take points off. I just talked about it to them now for the first time this season, just as a challenge to the players as much as anything.

"This group of players won't step off the gas. You have to give players challenges and use the momentum. We've not been beaten at home for four-and-a-half months and that's 11 games without defeat. We have five wins in a row on the road. You have to enjoy that.

"The challenge to is to get six. I want six next week at Barnsley. I want the club record."

The Lions held on to their lead against their London rivals despite being on the back foot for most of the second half.

Brentford hit the post through Sergi Canos and saw John Egan's header crash off the crossbar, while James Meredith made a clearance off the line.

Yoann Barbet had a first-half goal ruled out for offside, before Saville almost grabbed a second as his shot deflected onto the post.

Bees boss Dean Smith thought the better side had lost, but Harris disagreed.

He said: "The best side won the game 1-0. The best side always wins the game because that's the result. I thought Brentford were very good today and we rode our luck at times.

"But reverse that to the last fixture at Griffin Park, they rode their luck and we had refereeing decisions go against us and got beaten 1-0.

"Their goal was offside. They've hit the bar, we've hit the post. There was one off the line, great defending.

"Millwall going like a steam train really pleases me. Six points off the play-offs with nine games to go, the players and fans have earned the right to dream.

"You make your luck in this game. Today we worked hard and the shape was good. Brentford have really good players.

"I thought we looked a little bit leggy, three games in a week and only one change to the side. They relied on each other and their spirit got them through again."

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly