Millwall boss will speak to chairman after Rotherham loss

© Millwall FC
© Millwall FC

IAN Holloway will discuss Millwall’s current plight with chairman John Berylson following a 2-1 defeat to fellow strugglers Rotherham on Saturday.

The Lions’ hopes of staying in the Championship suffered a heavy blow after Kari Arnason headed a late winner for the Millers.

Given Millwall’s poor goal difference, they are now effectively seven points adrift of safety – with a trip to free-scoring Middlesbrough looming on Tuesday night.

1,309 Lions fans made the trip to the New York Stadium and many could be heard chanting “we want Ollie out!” towards the end of the game.

And Holloway said afterwards: “Results are what it’s all about and I’m not getting them. The fans then turn on me but I’m glad they’re turning on me and not my team.

“Everybody is under pressure and that’s where football is these days. I’m in the results business and if I’m not getting them, we will discuss that as a club.

“We won’t be forced into anything by other people but it has to be manageable and workable for the club because that’s what it is all about.

“I’m always a total optimist and it’s a good job I was last year when we stayed up. I still am optimistic because there was no difference between us and them today.

“That’s generally the case most weeks but unfortunately we’ve had some bizarre things happen to my squad in terms of injuries.

“It tests you and at the moment we’re finding it very, very difficult to get the right results. And that’s all of us.

“So I understand how the modern-day fan feels and normally you can have an effect the more noise you make.

“I hope that doesn’t happen but I’m fully aware of the job that I’m trying to do – my remit was to keep us up and then get us up, and for me that hasn’t changed.

“We’ll look at it, talk about it and we’re all adults. I believe I’ve got to do what’s right for the club.

“I believe it’s me who can turn this around but if other people don’t, then that’s outside of my control. If a group of supporters had the button, they’d have probably pushed it.

“We’ve got to deal with that. The press will write things and the pressure seems to be building and building in the Championship, which is the hardest division of them all.

“Some managers have been sacked when they’re seventh in the league because their chairman doesn’t want them. It’s a crazy game at the moment.

“I get on fantastically well with my chairman and he got abused coming out of the ground the other day, and he doesn’t deserve that.

“If it weren’t for him, there wouldn’t be a Millwall at the moment.

“I saw all sorts of good things coming from my team. I didn’t recognise them after we conceded on Tuesday but that didn’t happen today – even in the pressure pit of this game.

“I believe they’ll get stronger. But what will happen when they hear that shouted about me, I can only clear up with my board and my chairman.

“We’ll be talking and we’ll have to wait and see. I’m not talking about speculation and all of that nonsense now, I’m preparing for Middlesbrough away and Norwich at home.

“I still believe we’re a great club who will stay up in a very tough division.”

The Lions went ahead through Martyn Woolford before Lee Gregory failed to convert a one-on-one chance which would have made it 2-0.

And when Danny Ward levelled the scores 90 seconds after the restart, the momentum shifted.

Holloway added: “It’s a bitterly disappointing result because it certainly didn’t feel like that when we came into the dressing room after the first half.

“If you get a goal away from home, you need to hang onto that. But the truth is we could’ve been 2-0 up at half time but unfortunately we didn’t take that opportunity.

“That’s proved crucial.

“It looks very difficult for us now but it’s not. There are 12 games left and the fact is this time last year we had the same number of points as we do now.

“With nine games left, we dropped to rock bottom and we managed to come back so there are more than enough points to fight for.

“We have to get through this period where things seem to be going against us – like the cut on Gary Taylor-Fletcher’s head, for example.

“I think it was an elbow and he swears it was deliberate but we couldn’t stop it bleeding. The rules say you have to stay off until it stops.

“It was going to take ten minutes so I had to make the decision to bring him off. After that we didn’t quite look the same.

“Rotherham’s front six and their pressing is pretty amazing. But whoever has got past that lately has got at their back four and scored goals.

“That’s what we managed to do but we didn’t capitalise on that enough. If the second goal had gone in it would’ve knocked the stuffing right out of them.

“But they got a goal at the right time and we weren’t able to quite block it – Jos Hooiveld half-blocked it and that took it past my goalkeeper.

“That gave them a huge lift but I still didn’t believe that we would concede another one. But we’ve let two goals in and that’s too many.

“And then Diego Fabbrini got injured and had to come off. I’m touching wood that he’s not injured for Tuesday night.”

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