SCOTT Malone helped Millwall put one over his former club and then admitted he had the “utmost respect” for what Cherries had achieved this season.

Malone, who spent 12 months at Dean Court during a turbulent 2011-12 campaign, upset a section of Cherries supporters when he said he had had “the last laugh” on the club following his controversial departure in May 2012.

The defender, who joined Millwall in a swap deal with Josh McQuoid, was booed by away supporters as he received his prize for finishing runner-up in the Lions player-of-the-year awards at the Den on Saturday.

Malone told the Daily Echo: “I left on a bit of a sour note but didn’t mean any harm with what I said. I thoroughly enjoyed my time there and played some of my best football in the 12 months I was there, especially after I had signed permanently.

“You make decisions in football and I made my mine to leave but shouldn’t have said what I said. I really hope they go on and do well next season. It was nice to beat them after what they did to us in October.

“I have the utmost respect for what the club has done this season. They have done unbelievably well and Eddie and Jason have done a marvellous job. They have mixed up their styles really well and have been really effective.

“Defensively, that was the toughest game I have had this season and I couldn’t get forward because Adam Smith and Simon Francis were pushing on. The talent in their squad is endless.

"We set up to nullify them playing from the back and I thought it worked. Hopefully, both clubs can be up there fighting for the Premier League next season.”