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Millwall legend Harris to return as coach

Millwall have signed goalkeeper Stephen Bywater and announced the return of all-time leading goalscorer Neil Harris in a coaching capacity.

Bywater has signed a two-year deal with the Championship club, joining on a free transfer from Sheffield Wednesday, while Harris’ return comes just days after he announced his retirement as a player.

The 35-year-old striker scored 138 goals for the London side, easily bypassing Teddy Sheringham’s record of 111, but following repetitive injury woes he called time on his playing career on Friday.

However, Harris will not compeletely sever ties at the Den as new manager Steve Lomas has given him another job, hoping to replicate the former Manchester City player’s own seamless transition from playing into coaching.

“As soon as I became aware that Neil’s playing career was coming to an end I was keen to bring him onto the staff at Millwall once more,” Lomas told the club’s official website.

“I see Neil in the same position I was when I finished as a player and had the opportunity to get my coaching career underway at Norwich City. I believe he will be a great asset to us and an inspiration to the players, both at first-team level and with the development squad.”

Harris spent last season on loan at Southend United but only made 10 appearances after his damaged knee ligaments required surgery in March.

He is excited at the prospect of working with the next generation of talent at Millwall.

“I’m so excited to be coming back to the club where I enjoyed so many happy years as a player,” he added.

“The opportunity to pass on my knowledge and experience to the current generation of Millwall players and start my coaching career at the place I love is something I could only have dreamed of as I contemplated the fact that my playing days were over.”

Mon 24 June, 2013
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