This article is part of Football League World’s ‘What does the future hold?’ series, this content strand is where we evaluate and subjectively debate a player’s future at their current club…
Jiri Skalak’s encouraging pre-season campaign looks a distance memory at present, with the Millwall winger looking increasingly out of favour after making just ten appearances in all competitions this season.
Following on from a difficult first season in SE16, Skalak returned from his break in good shape and after some impressive performances against both Gillingham and Southend United in pre-season, it looked like 2019/2020 could prove to be a turning point for the Czech Republic international.
However, despite receiving plenty of praise from Harris last summer, new signing Connor Mahoney was given the nod in the opening few weeks of the season, and therefore, Skalak was an unused substitute in each of Millwall’s first three Championship matches as they remained unbeaten.
Remarkably, his first league minutes wouldn’t come until the 4-0 hammering at Fulham at the end of August.
And now, eight months down the line, the former Brighton & Hove Albion has almost become the forgotten man under Gary Rowett, making just one start this calendar year, and that came in the FA Cup third-round victory over Newport County back in January.
A four minute cameo in February’s draw against Fulham at The Den is Skalak’s only minutes since the FA Cup game, meaning it’s been another hugely disappointing campaign in South London.
With the likes of Mahoney, Aiden O’Brien and Shane Ferguson hardly banging down Rowett’s door for a regular starting place on the left-side of midfield, there remains a window of opportunity for Skalak, but given the way his Lions career has panned out up to now, the 28-year-old’s days as a Millwall player look limited.
All be be revealed in the coming months as to whether Rowett gives Skalak a third season in Bermondsey, but if he’s playing for his Lions future or putting himself in the shop window, his performance levels must improve dramatically if he wants to remain at Championship level.