Millwall manager Gary Rowett has confirmed that midfielder Shaun Williams and goalkeeper Frank Fielding will both leave the club this summer.
Williams joined Millwall from MK Dons in the 2014 January transfer window, and has since gone on to make 295 appearances in all competitions for the Lions, scoring 22 goals and winning promotion from League One in 2017.
Fielding meanwhile, made the move to The Den following his release from Bristol City in the summer of 2019, although injuries have since restricted him to just three appearances for the club.
Both players are out of contract at the end of this season, and has now been confirmed that that will mark the end of their time as Millwall players.
Providing an update on the pair following his side’s 6-1 thrashing by Coventry on the final day of the season, Rowett was quoted by News at Den as saying: “We felt for different reasons that we couldn’t offer those two players new deals – not because they aren’t brilliant characters, not because they haven’t done fabulously within the group.
“Difficult season for both of them this year, they’ve not played as much as they’d have liked – particularly for Willo who’s been here seven years.
“What I will say is that he’s conducted himself fantastically well and has been an excellent servant to this club.”
Indeed, it seems as though this is not a decision that Rowett took lightly, and both players will seemingly have the support of the club, with the Millwall boss adding: “Any of the players that have worked hard for us, we’ll try to help them move forward and we wish them all the best.
“But it’s the Championship and you’ve got to make some tough decisions to try to move the team forward – and those two decisions were pretty tough.”
I think that sadly, this might be the right decision for Millwall to have made.
At 34 and 33-years-old respectively, both Williams and Fielding are probably now starting to approach the latter stages of their careers.
As a result, it does make sense for them to move the duo on to help bring players in who may have the potential to make a bigger impact, although the contribution to the club of Williams in particular should not be forgotten.
Indeed, given the experience and pedigree they possess, it may not be a surprise to see these two receive offers from elsewhere in the football pyramid come the summer transfer window.