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Jackett hails new defender after Rams win
MILLWALL boss Kenny Jackett was delighted to secure victory over Derby on Saturday but it was the debut of Nigerian international defender Danny Shittu which particularly caught his eye at The Den.
Steve Morison and Theo Robinson grabbed a goal each in either half to lift the Lions into ninth place and leapfrog their opponents but Shittu made an impressive home debut throughout.
The former Charlton and Watford centre-back has signed a three-month deal as a free agent after an unsuccessful spell at Bolton Wanderers, although Jackett believes the defender will bring extra quality in defence.
He said: “At centre-half, he has the ability to go one-on-one and come out on top.
“If you’re going to attack and play along the line, your defenders have got to be able to handle one-on-one otherwise it limits your selection as a manager.
“He has that ability and he brought that to the game.”
Shittu started the match alongside Paul Robinson in the heart of defence and the duo played well together for the first time, limiting Derby to long range efforts which never troubled goalkeeper David Forde.
Despite coming through the ranks at Charlton as a youngster, sections of the home fans chanted his name and encouraged him to bring the ball forward at every opportunity.
But the no-nonsense player also showed his power and distribution throughout the win on Saturday, a quality which will endear him to the home faithful, but he’s still a few games away from being 100 per cent fit according to Jackett.
The defender pulled up with cramp in the second-half but with a few more training sessions, the Nigerian will be keen to begin a defensive partnership with Robinson.
Jackett said: “He had cramp in both legs and he's had a few weeks off with internationals.
“His fitness will improve with the more training he does.
“He did, I thought, have an impressive debut for us.”