Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

One Week When Lomas Can't Just Phone a Friend

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

One Week When Lomas Can't Just Phone a Friend

Article excerpt

Byline: Giuseppe Muro Football Correspondent

STEVE LOMAS knows Harry Redknapp is always on the end of a phone if he wants any advice but the Millwall boss is unlikely to put a call into his friend this week.

Lomas has been having regular conversations with Redknapp this season and can turn to one of the game's most experienced managers for guidance whenever he wants.

Redknapp managed Lomas for four years at West Ham and the pair have stayed in touch ever since. On Saturday they will meet in the dugout for the first time when Millwall host Queens Park Rangers in the Championship.

"We speak about things and he gives me the benefit of his vast experience," said Lomas. "I don't pester him every week but it would be wrong for me not to tap into that knowledge. If you phone him up and ask him about something, he will always give you his honest opinion."

Tapping into Redknapp's wealth of experience can only be good for Lomas, who endured a difficult start to his Millwall career. He was reportedly one game away from the sack after a poor start but results have improved and he is now showing why he is so highly rated by his former boss.

Redknapp gave Lomas, 39, a glowing personal recommendation earlier this year and advised Doncaster to appoint him when they were looking for a new manager.

Lomas, in turn, is very grateful and believes Redknapp has been unfairly criticised throughout his career.

The Millwall manager said: "Harry has helped in the past with other people and it was much appreciated. "He was tarred as a 'wheeler dealer' but when you are at a club like West Ham, you can't afford to get players in at the top level so you have to unearth some nuggets. He was very good at taking players like me, John Hartson, Paul Kitson and Eyal Berkovic, who were not on everyone's radar and moulding them into a good team. …

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