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"We played with flair and pace," says Harris

11 February 2017

The manager speaks following Saturday's win...

Neil Harris praised the "almost unplayable" Fred Onyedinma after the front-man's goal secured a 1-0 victory over Southend United on Saturday afternoon.

Onyedinma scored his sixth goal of the campaign in the 63rd minute as Millwall edged a tight encounter against the ten-man Shrimpers - a result that moves The Lions inside Sky Bet League One's top six.

"For the first half-hour, Fred was almost unplayable at times," said Harris.

"He's raw, got pace and power and is a good finisher in training. With Fred, Jed [Wallace] and Aiden [O'Brien], we've got options to rotate. Any of them can play up front or out wide."

A bruising afternoon saw The Shrimpers reduced to ten men in the first-half as Will Atkinson was shown a straight red card for a foul on Tony Craig.

The manager stated that he knew the visitors would be up for the challenge, but meticulously prepared for Phil Brown's men. 

"Southend are a really good side. I've watched their last few games in preparation. They're big and strong - men. We knew it was going to be a physical battle and that they'd be up for the challenge of coming to The Den.

"I thought we were excellent for 40 minutes at 11 v 11. We played with flair, pace and created chances, but then the sending off came and it didn't galvinise us.

"We got a little frustrated at times, so when the moment for a clinical head - literally - was needed, I'm delighted that Shaun showed his quality by putting a great ball in and Fred was on hand to put it in the net."

With games coming thick and fast and reigning Premier League champions Leicester City providing the opposition in The Emirates FA Cup next weekend, any suggestions that sights are set on such a tie was rubbished by Harris.

"There's no chance of players easing off the gas in my dressing room. We'll have to repeat the athleticism and desire we showed today on Tuesday night - that's the most important game of the season, because it's next one."

The manager also confirmed that Ben Thompson and Lee Gregory missed the game through injury, while Shaun Williams was absent as his wife had gone into labour.

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