New season, same old reasons and excuses for defeat.
Millwall have just lost on penalties to Crawley in the League Cup and the main reason, poor, poor mistakes and not taking chances. sounds familiar doesn’t it Lions fans?
The game started off poorly for ‘Wall and Crawley took advantage by capitalising on poor Millwall defending for Hope Akpan to make it 1-0.
Millwall pushed on then and and gained an equaliser from a Darren Ward header. The game went on and one or two weak points were being shown. New signing Scott Malone looked shaky and nervous at left back, plus some players looked like they thought it was another pre season game, no urgency in their play.
Second half Millwall started to find there way more in the match, but Crawley took the lead through a decent Nicky Adam strike from the edge of the box. Shaun Batt was brought on to put some pace in the team, and it seemed to work as the Lions looked more effective going forward. Batt was everything that Henderson wasn’t. Strong,eager, putting in effort.
Hendo looked like his head was elsewhere. Lazily missed two easy one-on-ones, slotting them wide. Batt was rewarded with a great strike to take it to extra time, his first goal since the injury and nobody deserves the goal more.
The formation didn’t seem to work throughout, with players playing out of position and although we tried to play some good football, it was difficult to break down the League One opposition.
One of the positives of the game was the substitutes, Shaun Batt most likely earned himself man of the match with that performance and Danny Shittu, making his second Lions debut, did his chances of a starting place wonders.
Good solid performance from him, he also managed to help distract Crawley striker Akinde from finishing the game. Akinde broke through the offside trap for a one on one with Taylor, Shittu stormed back and barged into the striker, falling in the process, this put off Akinde enough just enough for him to blaze it over the bar. A very lucky escape. Shittu by name, But the name surely doesn’t match the player.
The team played was most likely our strongest bar Andy Keogh, who was on international duty. But I could see changes for Saturdays Championship opener against Blackpool. Especially a change in formation from 4-2-3-1 to the more conventional 4-4-2 with two out and out strikers.
My team for Blackpool.
Smith, Shittu, Lowry, Malone
Batt, Trotter, Abdou, C Taylor
And hopefully a better performance, quicker play, more pressing and take your chances!
But Oh-well, it’s only the cup, not important is it? Roll on Saturday