BY RICHARD CAWLEY
Neil Harris is fully confident that Millwall will get deals over the line – but admits previously high wages paid by some clubs is slowing the transfer process.
The Lions boss, speaking to the South London Press before the signing of former Bristol City and Derby County keeper Frank Fielding yesterday, explained some of the difficulties in completing transactions.
A national newspaper reported earlier this week that AFC Bournemouth had accepted a bid for winger Connor Mahoney.
While Harris never comments on individual players, our paper did reveal recently that the Lions had made an offer to a Premier League club after Portsmouth were unwilling to budge on their valuation of Jamal Lowe.
“I’m relatively confident that this week and next we will have new players in at Calmont Road,” said Harris on Thursday morning.
“It is an ongoing process. As the game evolves, nothing is quick. We are trying to move things forward.”
Millwall have signed Alex Pearce on a free transfer from Derby County.
Ipswich Town keeper Bartosz Bialkowski would have cost in the region of £1million if medical tests had not thrown up a deal-halting issue. Fielding has arrived on a free after being released by City at the end of last season.
“The window has been slower than I expected,” said Harris.
“But the lack of spending ability of the bigger clubs in the Championship has hit not just Championship but League One spending ability also.
“Clubs haven’t bought players so there hasn’t been that domino effect that normally kicks in.
“Is it going to be something that’s new to the game? Possibly. Financial Fair Play is controlling some clubs’ spending ability. The Premier League keep spending because the TV revenue keeps going up and there are clubs who will break rules and have a go financially.
“There are less free transfers available this summer.
“For clubs of our size and stature it is tough to sign from other Championship clubs because the contracts they have given out in the past have been ridiculously high in the chase for Premier League football.
“So trying to get those players out of those clubs can prove difficult. I’ve got a good group of players, I’m very happy with them.”
PICTURE BY BRIAN TONKS
Please support your local paper by making a donation
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing recently: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.