Imagine you’ve just been beaten by Bournemouth 5-2 and now have a long two weeks of the international break in order to get over it, followed by three games against three of the top five in the Championship.
Would you have been happy with 3 draws? That’s exactly what we got, but it still feels like it could and maybe should have been more.
Yes in the QPR game Millwall got slightly lucky, and managed to sneak a point when most were expecting a thrashing. Then we had the tough trip to face newly relegated Reading.
And it seemed another hard day ahead when Sean Morrison put the Royals ahead in the opening minutes, but Liam Trotter’s late penalty saved Millwall’s blushes after another good Lions performance.
Then came the visit of table-topping Burnley last weekend…
I had a feeling that we would get a result, it would be classic Millwall – Lose to the bottom sides and beat the top team.
And three points seemed to be in the bag when a fine Scott McDonald finish and a massively deflected Danny Shittu volley saw the Lions go 2-0 up within the first half hour of the game.
But what goes around comes around, just a minute later and seemingly in cruise control, Burnley’s lifeline came through a Sam Vokes header after a cross rolled off Shane Lowry’s shoulder straight into his path.
Burnley completed the turn around ten minutes into the second half when Michael Kightly’s wayward shot was put through his own goal by Lowry, not the best days work for the Australian after coming on for the injured and dependable Scott Malone.
After that it was all about trying to hold on to the point the Lions had, it was wave after wave of claret and blue attack, but the Lions held firm to keep the game at 2-2 until the end.
Looking at the recent games it’s evident that we are not a bad side, on our best we can compete on the field with the big spenders and top teams in this division. Look at our performances against QPR and Reading and the Burnley first half performance was of a high calibre, but yet again we’ve been let down by stupid mistakes.
Last year, our defence was most likely our strongest point, it’s the reason we stayed up, well that and the fact other teams ran out of games to catch us. But this year, its the complete opposite, with the attacking players we have such as McDonald, Waghorn and Trotter, we are a threat.
But our defence is dire!
We now have four right backs at the club. Why? You have Paul Connolly who signed a short term deal who is now injured, Alan Dunne who has already had two red cards this season, and Jack Smith as a reasonable back up.
None are really good enough, so maybe the completed loan signing of Justin Hoyte will solve the issue.
Most Millwall fans are now praying for a swift return to Mark Beevers, because it means whenever he’s not starting, Danny Shittu is. Last year he was the hero at times, the go-to guy. Now he’s absolutely dire, even slower and can’t even do some of the simple things right. And you can guess his pattern of play, get the ball, hoof it up field, and lap it up while some of the crowd shout “SHITTU”.
Whatever results come our way over the next few weeks, the defence needs massive improvement, and fast!