RYAN Leonard said the performances of Millwall’s youngsters was a “big positive” in the 4-0 win over Concord Rangers last Saturday.
Reuben Duncan scored Millwall’s third goal at Thames Road less than 60 seconds after Ben Thompson had made it 2-0 to add to Shaun Williams’ first-half opener. Fred Onyedinma sealed the win in the last minute.
Duncan’s fellow teenagers Danny McNamara, Junior Tiensia, Billy Mitchell (above), Tyler Burey, Harry Ransom and Sam Skeffington all played 45 minutes. Ryan Sandford, 20, came on at half-time and looked composed as he helped his side to a clean sheet.
Burey, an 18-year-old snapped up for from AF Wimbledon this summer, impressed. He saw his cross cleared to Mahlon Romeo who drove the ball in low into the box and Thompson finished.
Leonard crossed for Duncan to nod past Dan Confrey, and Burey assisted the fourth with a cross that Onyedinma headed into the far corner.
Leonard was pleased that both sides achieved what they set out to.
“The biggest thing for us is fitness at the moment, trying to get it back into our legs. You can do as much running as you want in training but it doesn’t compare to a game,” Leonard said.
“We’re trying to build up partnerships where we can, depending on the teams. At the moment it’s about fitness and trying to get into good habits, which both our teams did, first half and second half.
“You can lose [sharpness] quickly, but it works both ways. You get it back a lot quicker as well. You might lose it after two weeks, but after four or five days the way we train we were back at it no matter what.
“After a week of training we could tell and the gaffer could tell that we were bang at it. It’s nice to start the games because no one likes training for the sake of training.
“I thought all the lads did well, I thought the young lads especially did well in both halves. It’s difficult for them because they’re coming in to try and impress with the senior pros but a lot of them got a grip on the game no matter what position they were playing. That was a big positive for us.”
Image: Millwall FC