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By ESPN Staff

Wise resigns as Millwall manager

Dennis Wise has confirmed he has stepped down as Millwall manager following a meeting with new club chairman Jeff Burnige.

The Lions player-boss led his team for the final time in today's goalless draw with Burnley, with the east Londoners ending the season in 10th place.

He said: 'I've had a meeting with the new chairman, he told me his direction and I didn't agree.'

Wise took the managerial reins at the New Den in October 2003, having joined the club as a player in September 2002.

He made a mixed start, beating Sheffield United 2-0 but getting sent off just four minutes after bringing himself on as a substitute.

The team reached the FA Cup final against the odds in the 2003-04 season, losing 3-0 to Manchester United in the final but claiming a place in the UEFA Cup.

They were unable to make it to the group stages of the competition however as they lost 4-2 on aggregate to Hungarian side Ferencvaros.

Wise, sitting alongside outgoing chairman Theo Paphitis after the Burnley match, said: 'I have had a long chat with the players and have decided that as of now, I am stepping down as manager of Millwall.

'I feel that it is important that the new chairman is allowed to get on with things; he has made it clear that he wants a fresh start and I think it is only fair that he is allowed to get on with it.

'I came in with Theo and I'm going with Theo. As far as (assistant boss) Ray (Wilkins) is concerned, he is meeting Jeff Burnige on Tuesday, but he is totally separate to me.'

Paphitis added: 'Dennis felt it was right to step down at this time.

'He is a bit bigger than the 5ft 4in the fans sing about, and it takes a very, very big bloke to put the club before himself, which is what Dennis is doing.

'He could have stayed, but Dennis feels it is right for Jeff and the club to move on.

'I would personally like to thank him for providing us with a couple of the most memorable years of our lives; years that are unlikely to ever be repeated.'

Wise continued: 'I would like to thank everyone at the club. I have loved Millwall, loved every single minute of it. They are a great bunch of lads here and the fans have just been fantastic. Absolutely fantastic.'