It's fair to say if we compare our start this season to where we were last time we came to The Den then it would be fair to call it abysmal. We battered them 4-0 to go top of the league, how times change eh? Pre-match we were in 23rd place, only Rochdale separating us from the base of the table. I also couldn't say I was positive ahead of the match considering Millwall sat in a play off position.
Coventry City Starting XI:
Coventry City Substitutes:
Millwall were definitely the better team for the first 10-15 minutes of the match, we got away with not conceding when they had early headed chances from Worrall and Webster respectively. We got our first shot on the board through Gadzhev on 20 minutes, he had a low drive which Archer kept held of very well.
We weren't creating too many chances, but on the 23rd minute Marvin Sordell or "Sordellinho" as my top says, struck one from 25-yards out so beautifully it beat Archer at his near post. People may have laughed at me saying he will come good, now who's laughing. Back to the football and Millwall nearly levelled when a wayward RCC clearance went straight to O'Brien. Bigirimana came in with an exceptional tackle.
Sordellinho had an ambitious 45 yard attempt go wide and I couldn't help but remember Armstrong's goal from last years match. Whilst the score line was different, the result was the same as we went into half time a goal to the good.
What I really didn't want to happen was another episode of the Bradford match last month where we went in at the break leading and ended up losing 3-1. When we did come out we didn't look like we were going to let this happen however, as we pressed on in the first minute in search of another. We were careless however when 5 minutes in to the second period Morrison had a free header from the penalty spot. He aimed it straight at Charles-Cook however so we were let off.
Sordellinho glanced a header just past the post from a corner, we were getting a lot closer to a second. Our closest chance since the goal once again came through Marvin, Reid burst down the left flank and cut in to the man himself who's attempt was deflected by a Lions defender and kissed the post on its way through.
A Millwall supporter was ejected after attempting to attack 800 City fans (on the second tier may I add) but was arrested by police before he could even reach the first. In amongst all of this however, Millwall managed to get an equaliser somewhat against the run of play, O'Brien coolly picked out the far corner from a Morrison cross.
This was gutting but furled us to bring on our secret weapon in Jodi Jones. Don't get me wrong I love the guy, but how teams deal with him is by fouling him. When he has a groin pretty much made out of glass then it makes your heart drop to your stomach seeing him go to ground in case our hope for the next 4 years has injured himself.
If Millwall weren't playing the physical game then I think we would have easily made it 2-1, especially with the introduction of Agyei. With both teams going for the win the last 10 minutes had the potential to be insane but it wasn't to be, as the game fizzled out and finished as a 1-1 draw. I would have easily taken that before the match, but the fact that we were leading for a lot of the game leaves a bit of sting. On the plus side though I have hope ahead of our home tie versus Oldham next weekend, before that though, I will be reporting on my first neutral game of the season so look out for that as well as my ground reviews for Millwall and the mystery team at:
My Man Of The Match - Gael Bigirimana - For the second week running, Bigirimana was the best player in the team. He bossed the midfield, I'll say the same now as I did last week. I hope his third spell is the one that sticks and he is in our team for years to come. This is his second award of the season putting him level in first with Ryan Haynes.