Boss reveals Millwall were close to two January signings – and questions players' motivation

NEIL Harris has expressed his frustration at players staying at clubs where they are not going to get game time – revealing Millwall were “very close” to at least one deadline-day signing.

Harris was in the market for an attacker in January after injuries to strikers Tom Elliott and Tom Bradshaw.

The Lions were linked with moves for Middlesbrough’s Rudy Gestede and Matt Smith of QPR, the latter whom they have monitored over a number of transfer windows.

Harris made two loan moves as a player. He joined Cardiff from Millwall in 2004-05, and then after a permanent transfer to Nottingham Forest he made a temporary switch to Gillingham in 2005-06.

Millwall have started with Lee Gregory as their lone striker in the last three games, winning one and drawing two.

Harris has been a critic of the transfer windows.

“We were very close, we were at the stage where I thought one was done,” Harris said after Saturday’s 0-0 stalemate at home to Rotherham. “In fact I thought more than one was done.

“What I don’t understand is that a lot of players decide to stay at clubs where they’re clearly not going to play. I wanted to play, I wanted to compete.

“It was difficult and you saw the lack of action [of clubs in January]. It’s not a bad thing for me, it’s not a bad thing there was a lack of action on deadline day because it might stop the build-up to it, the flurry of transfers, things like that. It was the least money spent for a long time.

“I’m pleased – the window is a shambles and it needs to be changed. I’ve said that before.

“We saw a lot of clubs trying to do business but couldn’t. We’re just one of a dozen or so in the Championship who tried on deadline day and couldn’t.”

Harris revealed Elliott could return from a dislocated shoulder this month.

“Hopefully. The thing with Tom is it’s all about strength. He’s out on the training pitch every day running, physically he can do everything.

“It’s just that shoulder, the danger of it popping out in physical contact. We’re hoping that we can build Tom in slowly. Date-wise I’m not sure.”

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly