Millwall boss Gary Rowett on why he had no hesitation in signing new contract

Gary Rowett did not have any doubts about committing his future to Millwall.

The Lions announced over the weekend that the former Stoke City, Derby County and Birmingham City manager had extended his contract.

Rowett, 48, was appointed in October 2019 and is the third longest-serving boss in the Championship.

“The aim for all for us is to be in a position where we can work with a long-term view on things,” he told the South London Press. “I’ve really enjoyed my time working at the club for the past nearly three years. When I spoke to John [Berylson, owner] in the summer and Steve [Kavanagh, chief executive] it was something they put to me. I didn’t hesitate, to be honest with you, because it’s a club I feel can keep building and keep moving forward.

“There’s good momentum. If I didn’t feel there was that momentum or opportunity to build the squad – the staff and training ground – in a positive way then it might have been something I had to think about a little longer. As it was, I was delighted to get it done. It gives us stability and a feeling that we’re all pushing forward hard with no distractions. It’s really important for any club.”

Rowett had talked after his appointment about a three-year plan to turn Millwall into play-off contenders.

The Lions took their top-six hopes to the last fixture of the 2021-22 campaign.

So what is the next target?

“We felt this summer was the best opportunity we had to push forward in a slightly different way,” said Rowett. “We always knews that one or two players who had been here weren’t going to be here and that we’d have to try and move forward in a slightly different way.

“We want to be ambitious. The aim each year is to keep improving what you’re doing behind the scenes and in front of peoples’ eyes on the pitch. We’ve been able to do that.

“We’ve been pretty close. I don’t think you get a lot closer than taking it down to the last game last season. If you keep building in the right way then there is at least a chance that you might be able to compete to take that next step. We’re starting to see a team that people say: ‘You know what? They’ve got a good side and they going to be in and around it’. We’re also the sort of club and team that know we’ve got to do everything we can to be in those kind of positions.

“I certainly think we’ve built a platform and a foundation to be able to push hard to see if we can take the next step. It’s any club’s next aim. There are probably 15 clubs in this division with the same aims.”


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