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Opinion: The Guv'nors or the Young Guns? Part 2 - Midfield

March 22, 2018

Written by:

Following on from an earlier article where I look at the best back line comprised of the 2010 - 2011 and current line-ups, I continue on my journey and will be trying to find the best four middle men who will make up the Millwall midfield.


The midfield is the engine of the side, having to effectively link up the defence and attack and also provide support to both.  These positions practically decide whether or not a team will be successful in a division or not, with a striker's goal drought being down to lack of service and a team leaking goals having a midfield that is broken down too easily.


In both seasons that are under the microscope, we have been blessed with great players in the middle of the park, but only four out of our eight can make this illustrious line-up.  Neil Harris' midfield certainly are more fast-paced and break neck speed than Jackett's, but Kenny had a few Speedy Gonzales' himself, with Chris Hackett, Danny Schofield and James Henry being just a few names that spring to mind.


So jump in the passenger seat, fasten your seat belt and join me in my Delorean back to the turn of the decade where we can decide whether any of Kenny Jackett's side will get into Neil Harris' Millwall team.


*Disclaimer: I will not pick these players on their future endeavours or potential, but how they performed in the 2010 - 2011 season or have been performing so far in this campaign.  I will stick with the traditional Millwall 4-4-2, and will aim for first team regulars as best as I can.






Why choose James Henry: James Henry was an incredibly gifted winger, the classic wide man who had the clichéd paint on his boots due to the amount of time he stayed by the touchline.  Henry had a phenomenal cross on him that could find his team mates with pin point accuracy, and he also had a great free-kick on him too.


Why choose Jed Wallace: Although on the right of midfield, Wallace plays a more of a free role and cuts in from the right into dangerous positions.  Pacey, exciting, skilful, threatening, a goal scorer and more importantly - consistent.  Millwall are a much weaker side with Wallace out of the side, as his three game ban after his red card showed.






Why choose Liam Trotter:  His body language at times may've suggested otherwise, but Trotter was a great central midfielder for the Lions and shone in the 2010 - 2011 season.  Trotter could hold a ball up superbly, could spot a pass before the receiver even called for it and was strong when in possession.


Why choose George Saville: A few eyebrows were raised when Saville joined the Lions at the start of the season, but these eyebrows went back down with excellent performances that has made Saville a leading contender for Player of the Season. Along with pace, skill, a quick football brain and physicality, Saville also gets something that all fans love from central midfielders: goals!






Why choose Tamika Mkandawire: Tam had built a reputation as a stand out lower league defender, so questions were asked when he lined up in the centre of Millwall's Championship midfield.  Answering these questions with faultless performances, a calm demeanour and playing as a fantastic holding midfielder, Mkandawire never put a foot wrong and quite rightly stormed to Millwall's Player of the Season.


Why choose Shaun Williams: Quite simply, Shaun Williams is the best passer in the side and he pulls all the strings in the middle of the park.  A player who plays with elegance, finesse, grace and breath taking precision, Williams is a joy to watch and evidently a pleasure to play with.






Why choose Danny Schofield: Schofield was more of a left midfielder than a left winger, but he complimented the attacking right hand side perfectly.  Sitting slightly deeper to support his two centre midfielders when the right winger attacked, Schofield was a Steady-Eddie who was always reliable but also dangerous in attack.


Why choose Aiden O'Brien: A player who many believe is a centre forward has bloomed whilst playing out on the left wing.  Adding an extra dynamic to the Millwall attack, O'Brien pops up from seemingly nowhere and finds the back of the net.  Playing the game at 100mph, O'Brien runs himself into the ground every game.






The new boys dominate the midfield, but there is one exception where one of the Guv'nors takes the centre midfield spots.  You could easily toss a coin to decide whether Mkandawire or Williams deserve the starting place, but for me Tam just edges it by millimetres.  Wallace, Saville and O'Brien take the other midfield places, and as before whether you agree or disagree, let me know your thoughts in the comments below!





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