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Harris to prepare players "physically and mentally" for new campaign

The manager talks about "vital" Portugal period...

5 June 2018

Millwall's players will work for up to five sessions a day on their pre-season training camp in Portugal, says Lions boss Neil Harris.

Following a longer-than-usual off-season break this summer - given there were no Play-Offs to participate in - Millwall's squad will report back to Calmont Road on Monday 25th June ahead of the 2018/19 Sky Bet Championship season.

The Lions' friendly fixtures kick-off with the annual trip to Dartford (Saturday 7th July, 1pm), with away matches at Cambridge United (Saturday 21st July, 3pm) and Colchester United (Tuesday 24th July, 7.45pm) also scheduled to take place before the League campaign kicks off on Saturday 4th August.

The gap in mid-July will allow Harris, his staff and the squad to fly out to Portugal for an intensive pre-season training camp.

Speaking to, the manager stated that whilst the prolonged hiatus will do "the world of good," he wants his players back fit, lean and ready to run.

"First and foremost, as much as I'd love to have been in the Play-Offs this year, it will do my players and my staff the world of good to have an extended break," he said.

"Two short summers, for all of us at The Den, maybe caught up with us in the last few weeks of the season. The players are on an extended break, but they are back in June - the days of coming back in July have gone.

"They're given off-season schedules to work to, which coincide with family time, where they can go and let their hair down a little bit and have time with their families, which I always say is important, but also making sure they come back in a physical condition that is what is expected by my standards.

"My standards mean that they come back fit, lean and they can run. They know pre-season will be hard.

"We'll be going to Portugal again for 7-10 days, which is vital to me to prepare the players for the season, get the messages across and be with them 24/7. It gives us a chance to work five sessions a day from pool sessions to physical, to football, to tactical and video work in a short space of time, which we can't do at Calmont Road.

"It'll be all about preparing the players, physically and mentally, for the new season."

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