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Rowett shares delight at signing "number one target" Woods

The manager on Ryan's arrival

17 January 2020

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Millwall boss Gary Rowett has labelled Ryan Woods as a "fantastic signing" after the midfielder put pen-to-paper on a loan deal on Friday morning.

The 26-year-old will spend the rest of the 2019/20 Sky Bet Championship campaign at The Den after joining from Stoke City, and Rowett told of his reasoning behind the capture of the midfielder.

"It's great to have him here - I know him well from working with him at Stoke," he said. "He's a top midfielder in his position and he's very flexible. People may pigeon-hole him as a defensive midfielder in terms of playing a holding role and getting on the ball, but we've found previously that he can step in higher up the pitch and make things happen.

"The beauty of bringing him in is that he's got a bit of everything. He can pass the ball with a bit of extra composure and technicality that we need, but he is also a feisty character and competitive - I'm sure the fans will love him. He brings something different to what we've got."

Woods has appeared 12 times for The Potters so far this season, having played eight times in the League, but will be Cup-tied for The Lions' Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round meeting with Premier League outfit Sheffield United next Saturday.

The midfielder is a Millwall man until May, but beyond that is in the mind of the manager already.

"The plan for anyone we bring in is to look at them for the longer term. There is that opportunity, potentially, but the fact of the matter is that we needed to bring some extra quality into the midfield. We didn't just want to go out and get anyone, we wanted it to be a right-midfielder and he was the number one target. I think he's a fantastic signing for us."

Watch the full interview with Gary Rowett above as the manager also touches on Saturday's Sky Bet Championship meeting with Reading.

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