Matt Davies asks Millwall supporter Paul Donovan for his view on Swindon’s recent loan signing Darren Ward.
What do the Millwall fans think of Ward?
Wardy will always be welcome back at The Den. He has been a great professional over the years and is quite a character off the field too, he owns his a Cattery and his nickname from back in the day was Peckham Beckham! Whilst he was here he also won player of the year twice so is definitely a great addition for your squad.
What type of player is he?
Cool calm Centre Half. Never had pace so his game is based on positioning and doing the simple things right. He is a leader at the back, he likes to organise the defence and has great positioning and awareness.
He is strong in the air, a very capable player. He can use either foot and has a decent range of passing.
What are Darren’s strengths and weaknesses?
Strength is he will command your back 4 and reads the game so well. Also seems to win a lot of headers against much bigger strikers and doesn’t give away many free kicks in the process.
I’d say his main weakness is his lack of pace, but he is still a decent players as he makes up for that in strength, positioning and experience.
How much do you think he can offer and what do you think he will add to the team?
With age comes experience, has played at Premier League level and was a key figure in Millwall getting promoted back to the Championship. Something I’m sure he can repeat with Swindon.
He will add some composure to your defence when under pressure. He will also chip in with a goal or two from set pieces.
Also his fitness levels are fantastic for his age as he has always looked after himself, he has done what many players do to prolong his career and taking his nutrition very seriously he also does a bit of yoga! He has got a few of our players into it now they must keep Holland and Barrett in business! He even has his own fitness blog online with tips.
What is his distribution like?
Very calm and composed on the ball likes to keep it simple, he likes to play the ball along the floor and can use either foot. But if under pressure he won’t overcomplicate anything, he’s not afraid to hit row Z in order to get players back and start again from the throw in.
Will you be glad to see Wardy leave?
50/50. We need to get him off the wage bill as we brought in Danny Shittu but Wardy will be missed as whenever he has been needed he has done a great job. In fact he started in our first league match this season and against Crawley in the Capital Cup he was our man of the match for me and also scored a quality header from a corner, so in my opinion he is well capable of playing every week at championship level.
What will Darren Ward be remembered at Millwall for?
Many years loyal service and being a true professional. He played a major part in our promotion campaign back to the Championship and played against Manchester United in the FA Cup. We thank him for serving us so well over the years and we wish him every success with Swindon Town.
Good luck this season hope it’s another promotion for you and the crazy manager that is Paolo Di Canio :-)