Millwall man signs new deal – but is not ready for first-team action for Championship club

BY RICHARD CAWLEY

richard@slpmedia.co.uk

Ryan Sandford signed a new contract this week – but Millwall boss Neil Harris says the young goalkeeper is not ready for first-team football at The Den.

The 20-year-old stopper had due to be out of contract at the start of July but penned new terms on Monday.

Harris said: “Ryan is a goalkeeper who is developing. He’s not ready for first-team football at the moment.

“The good thing with Ryan is that he has got all the potential and has done for the last three or four years, coming through the academy and working with Lee Turner [goalkeeping coach] has made him really develop and grow as a person.

“Goalkeepers are tough development-wise because if you make a mistake or two then they are having a really bad run of form. If you play well then everyone wants to integrate you into the higher ranks. With goalkeepers you have to be patient.

“Unless you have got a real exceptional one that comes through at 23, 24 or 25 and stays consistent, then goalkeepers don’t really develop until they are 28 or 30.

“We understand that and Ryan will be given time. We have extended his contract to allow him to keep developing with Lee, the U23s, training with the first team and going on loan. If he is called upon to be with us in pre-season, because we are trying to finalise a goalkeeper or two, then he is ready to do that.” 

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