French defender Fabien Laurenti became manager Mike Phelan's third signing of the summer transfer window after he snapped up the French right back, 29, on a free transfer. He adds depth to a pretty small squad as the season comes to a start.
Fabien Laurenti, formely of OM and RC Lens, has signed a two-year deal at English club Millwall after agreeing personal terms. The French defender will be registered for the Championship season which starts in only a week.
"I am very glad to join Millwall," Laurenti told the journalists. "This is a club with great tradition and I hope I can make fans very happy with my football." Phelan said Laurenti would add depth to the squad.
"To be honest, I'd like a much bigger squad," he said. "But I know I can't have it, and I will make do with what I've got.
"We would still like to add players though, I don't think our squad is complete yet," he added. Millwall signed Laurenti for free and he is on a 6,000 a week and will wear the number 11 jersey.
It is almost like a welcome home reunion, as Millwall have been drawn against League Two side Southend United, where Millwall record goalscorer Neil Harris currently plays. The match will be played in London at The Den.
In Mike Phelan's first competitive game in charge of Millwall, he has been matched up against League Two outfit Southend United. Emotions will be high at The Den as it is a big return for club legend Neil Harris, who holds the Millwall goal-scoring record.
"It will be close," said Phelan. "Southend have the ability to mix it up, they have a great manager in Phil Brown, so it should be a test.
"Their is no room for complacency or ignorance," said the former United assistant. It looks like Millwall will field a relatively strong side, but John Marquis may get the chance in the first team he craves ahead of loanee Steve Morison.
Millwall will be hoping for another cup run after reaching the quarter finals under Jackett. Fans will want a cup run under their belts, according to the manager. "It gives the fans confidence as well as the players."
Millwall go into the match heavy favourites and should expect to progress to the next round with ease.
We come closer and closer to the beginning of the nPower Championship season and there is one thing I have been working on all preseason. It is the thing that makes a team tick, and can be the difference between relegation, and glory. Tactics.
I have only armed myself with one at this stage, and hopefully I don't need any. This tactic alone is pretty versatile. I like to call it a 4-2-2-2, with two wingers, central midfielders and strikers. Each position is very versatile so we need players with high adaptibility. I can chop and change this tactic if I want, which is good, too.
Up forward, I will be relying on Keogh and Morison upfront to combine for a solid partnership. If we have a target man and a poacher upfront it means we will have one chasing the knock downs. If Keogh's positioning and off the ball stats are good, this could be useful. Steve Morison will also need high strength, positioning and heading stats because target men need these qualities.
In the middle there is two departments. With wingers on the sides, I have set their role to winger. This requires high crossing, speed, acceleration and passing. I will be relying on the two men down the flanks for crosses into Morison or Keogh, or even a central midfielder arriving late in the box.
In central midfielder, we have two players there each with different roles. I have put one deep-lying playmaker in there. His job is too craft out passes from the middle of the park. He can be the conductor of our orchestra. He must have high passing, vision, creativity and decisions skills and needs composure if he is ever under pressure. The box-to-box midfielder is a tirless player who runs all day. Stamina and strength are vital for this role and this player could be essential for us.
The defence is pretty straight forward. Both full backs have been set to support the wingers in attack. They still need all defensive qualities like positioning, tackling and heading but they also need crossing if they can be counted as 'complete'. Both centre-backs are normal centre-backs, one is set to cover the other one, who who go out and try to intercept passes and smother attack before it is made. He needs anticipation, positioning and tackling stats for these.
That is my only tactic so far, hopefully this is enough to get us a mid-table position which the board expects. It has worked well in preseason and should hold off Southend. Then it is the proper football!
Millwall fans and manager alike were devastated as their side crumpled under harmless pressure from League Two Southend United in the Capital One Cup - with Neil Harris, the Lions legend, starting heroic fightback by the underdogs.
After going 1-0 down early on, Millwall responded and found the equalizer. But just before halftime frustration kicked in, literally, as Liam Trotter forcibly kicked an opponent during play. He was shown a straight red and did not get a good look from manager Phelan.
Despite being down to ten men, Millwall found a second and looked on course for what should have been a comfortable victory against a side they are two divisions higher than in the pyramid. But it wasn't to be, as in the 85th minute Millwall all-time top-scorer Neil Harris beat Ross Turnbull at his near post.
Minutes later, another former Lion, Marc Laird, set up the Southend striker who gently tapped it into an open net. Tempers flared from the away stand, with chants of 'Phelan Out' being heard clearly in the away manager's dugout.
"That was poor, really really poor," he said after the match. "Liam's dismissal I thought would ruin us, and it did in the end. Also the poor defending, too, but really, that one less man in midfield left holes everywhere," Phelan analyzed.