Liverpool winger Sheyi Ojo wants to take more responsibility upon joining Millwall on loan, admitting that “a lot of players and managers” have urged him to do so before.
Ojo was expected to depart Anfield on a permanent basis over the summer, with clubs in Greece, Belgium and Germany interested and a £5 million valuation set.
But that price tag seems to have proved prohibitive, and with no money in the Championship, the 24-year-old was left to head out on the seventh loan of his career on deadline day.
He joined Gary Rowett’s Millwall, and after a campaign in and out of the side with Cardiff last time out, Ojo has accepted that he must “really kick on” this season.
“I’ve played quite a few games already, but this season I think it’s time for me really kick on now and show what I can really do, step up and be the difference,” he told millwallfc.co.uk.
“A lot of players and managers have said that about me in the past and I feel like it’s time to really step into that light, be difference and help Millwall in the best way that I can.”
On his move, he added: “It was crazy for me, it was my first deadline-day moment.
“But at the end of the day, the most important thing is to play football and that’s obviously why I decided to come here.
“I’m really excited for the upcoming season and hopefully it will be a good challenge.”
In assessing his hopes for the season ahead, Ojo looked as far as next summer, with the hope that his time at the Den would put him in a “strong position” to “move on.”
“Just to try and be the difference as much as I can, try to help my team-mates and show everyone what I can really do on a consistent level,” he said of his aims for 2021/22.
“I feel like that would put me in a strong position hopefully next season to go back to Liverpool and sort of move on from there.”
While Ojo’s words could be misinterpreted as a desire to “move on” from Liverpool, the reality is that he will be required to in order to find a permanent home as a first-team player.
And wis time at Millwall could – as with recent stints with Rangers and Cardiff – give him a platform to prove he is worthy of a long-term starting role at a Championship club.