Harris praises ‘outstanding’ Craig after Brentford draw

MILLWALL boss Neil Harris said Tony Craig was “outstanding” in the 1-1 draw with Brentford in the defender’s testimonial at The Den on Saturday.

Craig started at left-back but moved inside to partner Byron Webster in the centre of defence when Shaun Hutchinson went off injured in the 18th minute.

Craig, 31, missed seven months last season with a serious knee injury, but he looked sharp against his former club.

Two moments illustrated that, first when he nicked the ball off Scott Hogan’s toe when the striker was about to shoot in the box, and then late on when he got his body in the way to clear when Philipp Hofmann threatened to get a late winner.

Harris revealed Craig was more nervous than usual before the game, but he was pleased with the club captain’s performance.

“For it to be a memorable day for Tony Craig, you always hope it will be a good performance, and he was outstanding,” Harris said. “He showed his quality and his class and I don’t think he put a foot wrong in 90 minutes.

“He certainly showed at times, leadership-wise and with some last-ditch defending, what we missed last year.

“He was nervous when he turned up at the ground today and he was open and admitted that to everybody. He’s a proud man, he had done all the PR work before and on these occasions the fans either come or they don’t, he wasn’t worried about that.

“He wanted the day to go smoothly, he wanted the boys to enjoy the game and wanted the team to be successful. He also put himself under pressure because he wanted to put in a good performance himself. And he did that.”

Meanwhile, Huthcinson will have a scan on a tight hamstring on Monday but is a doubt for next weekend’s League One clash with Oldham.

Image source ©Charlie Compitus

John Kelly