Skip to main content

Match Report


Posted Sat 19 Mar 11 at 18:44 PM

Millwall 3 Cardiff City 3

Steve Morison's sublime late strike moved Millwall to within six points of the Play-Offs following a six-goal thriller with promotion rivals Cardiff City.
In a ding-dong Den encounter Chris Burke fired The Bluebirds into a 49th-minute lead, only for Liam Trotter to haul The Lions level within three minutes from the penalty spot.
Kevin Lisbie (62mins) headed Millwall into a 2-1 lead before Cardiff to established a 3-2 advantage with further goals from Peter Whinngham (73mins) and a second from Burke with 10 minutes remaining.
However Morison provided a perfect finish from sub Hameur Bouazza's delicious through ball to secure a share of the spoils for Kenny Jackett's side.
Alan Dunne, booked for an 84th minute challenge on Craig Bellamy, was then shown his second yellow of the game in the fourth minute of injury time for another tackle on the same player and now misses Millwall's matches at Hull City and Leeds United.
Speaking after the game Lions boss Kenny Jackett said: "The game exploded in the second half.
In the first half we were nervous and were holding on a bit, but after the break we upped the tempo and the game opened up.
We showed real quality at times and kept going and I was pleased with the spirit."
The opening 45 minutes was very much a cat and mouse affair as both teams tried to find an opening but with no succcess.
Cardiff edged matters in terms of possession and it took a brilliant block tackle by Dunne to nick the ball off the toes of Peter Whittingham as the Cardiff man prepared to pull the trigger on 12 minutes.
Three minutes later Lions skipper Paul Robinson needed lengthy treatment to a head injury sustained from the flailing arm of Bellamy, and was replaced by former Bluebird Darren Purse midway through the half suffering from double vision.
Cardiff were forced to make a change too after 28 minutes with striker Jay Bothroyd hobbling off to be replaced by the immense physical presence of Jon Parkin.
Scoring opportunities were few and far between before the break with Seyi Olofinjana's close range header comfortably dealt with by Lions keeper David Forde, who did produce a fine save to parry Parkin's injury-time drive.
However, the lack of goalmouth action was more than made up for in a breathtaking second half.
The half was just seconds old when Morison's flick on played in Lisbie, but the angle was too tight and the latter's rising shot flew over.
Cardiff broke the deadlock shortly afterwards when Burke was allowed too much time and space in the danger zone and threaded a low, angled finish beyond the reach of keeper Forde.
The visitors' celebrations were cut short when just two minutes later Lisbie had his shirt clearly pulled by Gabor Gyepes in the area and referee Anthony Taylor had no hesitation in brandishing a yellow card to the Cardiff defender and pointing to the spot.
Midfielder Trotter, who has taken over penalty-taking responsibilities from Morison following the striker's two successive spot kick misses, made no mistake with a clinical finish sending Stephen Bywater the wrong way.
Cardiff thought they had a penalty of their own after 56 minutes when referee Taylor initially pointed to the spot after a brilliant Purse tackle had cleared from Bellamy for a corner. But following consultation with the fourth official, Taylor did the right thing and rectified his mistake, awarding Cardiff a corner instead.
Such was the vocal volley directed by Bellamy at the referee, the Welsh striker was booked for dissent.
It was the home fans who were celebrating once more on 62 minutes when Hameur Bouazza, a replacement for Andros Townsend on the hour, curled over a corner, Trotter flicked on and Lisbie ghosted in to glance a header beyond the reach of Bywater.
Cardiff responded well and twice hit the woodwork before Whittingham was on hand to crack home Bellamy's cross to level 18 minutes from time.
It looked to be game over for The Lions when another Bellamy cross was converted by Burke at the far post from eight yards in the 80th-minute.
But Jackett's men regrouped once more and when Bouazza's hooked forward pass was picked up by Morison, the striker looked up, spotted Bywater marginally off his line and produced an exquisite chip to bring the teams level at 3-3.
There was still time for Millwall to fashion a great opportunity bang on 90 minutes when a huge clearance by Forde caught the Cardiff defence static and Neil Harris was in on goal. Unfortunately the front man's shot lacked power and Bywater gleefully gathered the ball at his near post.
Right-back Dunne was shown a red card with just seconds remaining for a poor challenge on Bellamy, but the resulting free-kick was cleared and referee Taylor blew for full-time to end what had developed into an epic encounter.

Millwall: Forde, Dunne, Craig, Trotter, Robinson (Purse, 26mins), Ward, Townsend (Bouazza, 60mins), Mkandawire, Lisbie (Harris, 78mins), Morison, Henry. Subs not used: Mildenhall, Barron, McQuoid, Rowlands.
Bookings: Robinson (25mins), Townsend (45+3mins), Dunne (84mins), Morison (90+1mins)
Sending off: Dunne (90+4mins)
Scorers: Trotter (52mins pen), Lisbie (62mins), Morison (87mins)

Cardiff City: Bywater, Quinn (Blake, 72mins), McNaughton, Hudson (Gyepes, 42mins), Keinan, Bellamy, McPhail, Bothroyd (Parkin, 29mins), Whittingham, Burke, Olofinjana. Subs not used: Brown, Rae, Emmanuel-Thomas, Naylor.
Bookings: Gypes (50mins), Bellamy (56mins)
Scorers: Burke (49, 80mins), Whittingham (73mins)

Ref: A.Taylor
Att: 15,039 (away 1,856)

    Latest Match Reports