Neil Harris has urged his Millwall team to continue their momentum against Everton in Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round fixture.
The Lions have been inconsistent to the point of struggling against relegation this season, sitting only six points clear of the bottom three.
Four successive victories since Boxing Day eased the pressure but a defeat and a draw in their last two games has contributed to Harris’ concerns they are still at risk.
In Everton’s similarly out-of-form, expensive Premier League squad, they are facing opposition similar in profile to those they have thrived against in previous FA Cup runs.
Since reaching the final in 2004 Millwall have also reached a further semi-final, and a quarter-final under Harris in 2017.
He said: “I don’t feel we are in a position where we have turned the season around. We had a relatively good first few weeks then we had a spell where every error we made, the ball went in the goal.
“I have never really had that before when I have been in charge. This year has been the first time and we had a dip in individual players not being at their best. Certainly had more injuries than we have ever had. It has culminated in us not winning as many games as we should have.
“Coupled with the number of late goals we have let in, it has put us in a position we are not used to being in, the lower half of the division. It has been a good learning curve.
“Since Christmas we took 10 points in five league games, beat Hull and the league game we lost was at Blackburn in the last minute. That was a frustrating one.
“We have got a long way to go to get back to our best which we showed at the end of last season but we are certainly showing signs of improvement, and that brings momentum and confidence.”
On Saturday, Harris remains without the injured Tom Bradshaw, Tom Elliott, Ben Amos and Conor McLaughlin, and recent signing Ben Marshall, who is cup-tied. Fellow new arrival Alex Pearce is expected to make his second appearance for the club.
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