Matt Smith has gone from Millwall’s top goalscorer to a bit-part player under Gary Rowett.
Following his move from London rivals Queens Park Rangers, the experienced-striker was in fine goalscoring form throughout last season – finding the net more frequently than anyone else in the Championship.
However, Smith having the best minutes-per-goal ratio in the second-tier hasn’t been enough to convince Gary Rowett that he’s good enough to warrant a regular place, and has been restricted to five league starts altogether.
Despite his lack of opportunities, only Jed Wallace has scored more times this term than Smith’s four as he continues to be Millwall’s biggest goal threat.
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However, it’s been two months since Smith started in any competition – the defeat to Derby back in early December to be precise – and with his Lions contract expiring in the summer, according to Transfermarkt, it’s surely time for the former QPR striker to really consider his future at The Den.
Whilst Smith’s lack of pace has been an issue throughout his career, he’s remains one of the most lethal players aerially in English football, and at just 31-years-old, still has plenty more to offer.
Rowett has previously spoken highly of Smith, but there’s clearly something he can’t offer – with the likes of Tom Bradshaw, Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, Kenneth Zohore and Troy Parrott, who was goalless in 14 appearances prior to his departure, regularly preferred to Smith in the starting XI.
Talks will take place in the summer, and if Rowett can’t guarantee Smith more a regular place in the side then he should be moved on, because the current situation isn’t benefitting either party.
Smith’s future could depend on whether Millwall are able to sign Zohore from West Brom on a permanent, but something has to give on way or another.