By George Overhill

14th Oct, 2022 | 4:40pm

Gary Rowett admits Millwall developments unfair on Leeds United loanee Jamie Shackleton

Gary Rowett admits that it has been unfair on Leeds United loanee Jamie Shackleton to be dropped from the Millwall side after being in good form.

The midfielder, 23, is on loan at the Den this season alongside fellow Elland Road export Charlie Cresswell, with both featuring extensively over the opening weeks of the campaign.

Aside from the 20-year-old defender being left on the bench for the defeats against Norwich (19 August) and Reading (27 August), the pair had both featured in every game until the Lions boss changed his formation amid indifferent form two matches ago, and both Whites players have now missed the draw with Rotherham (5 October) and the win over Middlesbrough (8 October).

Speaking about Shackleton, who had started the six games prior, to News at Den for Southwark News Rowett said: “I think Shacks has been in really good form.

“It’s more a formation change that led to him being out of the starting lineup, which feels a little bit unfair that that’s happened, but I’ve had to pick the team and roll with that to see where it goes.”

He went on to suggest that the Whites man, and likely Cresswell too, will still feature strongly over the season, saying:“All of those players are going to be a massive part of what we’re doing, all of them will be needed to be ready when they come back into the team.

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“Most managers will say exactly the same: the hardest part of management is leaving players out that have worked really hard all week and don’t feel like they’ve got a chance to do their job on a Saturday.

“In no line of business would you feel like you’re sacking someone on a Friday and then having to reemploy them again on a Monday, that’s how it feels.”


Loan moves can be hit and miss sometimes but in the case of both Shackleton and Cresswell the switch to the Championship had been very successful before the formation change.

Cresswell is there to get regular senior football and aid his development towards the Elland Road first team, while Shackleton appeared to be playing himself into a permanent move to south London.

Both of those things may well get back on course over the coming months, but it is unlucky that the team’s form has necessitated a switch that drops them out of the side.

Shackleton is a versatile player and should be relatively confident of a return to action before too long, but while Rowett’s side remain unbeaten he’s unlikely to want change things baring injury or fatigue.

The Millwall boss was one of the main names linked to the vacant West Brom job this week following the sacking of Steve Bruce, which would have arguably been more damaging to both United players, as a new manager may have not rated them at all.

But even with that appearing to now be off the table the hierarchy at Elland Road will still be watching on with interest to see how Millwall are doing, and how that translates into game time for the two loanees.

In other Leeds United news, a decision has been made at Chelsea on going over a key Whites man.