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Match Report


Posted Sat 29 Nov 14 at 17:47 PM

Full-time from the Goldsands Stadium

Super sub Magaye Gueye stepped off the bench to grab a last-gasp leveller as Millwall battled back brilliantly from a 2-0 deficit to secure an excellent awayday point at high-flying Bournemouth. 

First-half goals from Steve Cook (23mins) and Brett Pitman (25mins) looked to have put Eddie Howe's Cherries in pole position to secure a 10th win in 13 games. 

However the never-say-die Lions, inspired by the outstanding Scott McDonald, hauled their way back with courage, conviction and two expert finishes from Ed Upson (75mins) and Gueye (88mins) to send the 991 visiting fans home happy. 

Lions boss Holloway was able to name an unchanged team for only the third time this season, including a 300th appearance for goalkeeper David Forde. 

However it proved to be a miserable opening 45 minutes for all concerned in the Millwall camp as Bournemouth strolled into a comfortable 2-0 lead.

The home side showed exactly why they went into the game as the Championship's joint top-scorers, looking threatening every time they ventured over the half-way line.

Bournemouth fashioned the first scoring chance of the game on nine minutes when Cook stole in at the back post and powered his header from Pitman's corner narrowly wide.

Millwall had to re-shuffle on the quarter hour mark when Lee Martin hobbled off injured and was replaced by Jermaine Easter.

But it was Bournemouth who continued to ask questions of the visiting defence with Matt Ritchie's 30-yard pile-driver flashing wide and Yann Kermorgant's 20th-minute header narrowly off target.

It took a marvellous save from Forde to tip Pitman's textbook downward header over the bar seconds later. The pressure from Howe's men was now relentless and the deadlock broken in the 23rd-minute when Andrew Surman's deep cross picked out Cook, who planted a firm header home.

Bournemouth doubled their tally barely 120 seconds later; Ritchie slipped the ball through to Pitman and he kept his composure to produce a clinical low finish that gave Forde no chance.

Millwall tried in vain to build up a head of steam, but other than a Martyn Woolford drive which flew a yard wide, The Lions produced little to worry Artur Boruc in the home goal during the first half.

The start of the second period saw Millwall introduce Ricardo Fuller for centre half Mark Beevers. Shaun Williams dropped back to fill in alongside Byron Webster with Woolford slotting into midfield and Fuller adding his physical presence up front.

It was certainly a much brighter period for The Lions who started to grow into the game, getting forward quicker and creating some decent scoring opportunities.

Fuller and Woolford both drew saves from Boruc with close range headers, but the keeper was forced into making his first significant stop of the game on 62 minutes, palming away Dunne's rasping drive for a corner.

The Lions enjoyed long spells of possession and grabbed a deserved lifeline with 15 minutes remaining. Easter did well to work an opening on the right and whipped over an inviting delivery to Upson, who made no mistake with a firm header beyond the reach of Boruc.

Substitute Gueye entered the fray seconds after Upson's goal and the move paid off handsomely. The pacey wideman was immediately involved in the action, using his pace and close control to tease and torment a Bournemouth backline that now looked decidedly shaky. 

Lee Gregory was unlucky with an 81st-minute header that the keeper held at the second attempt as The Lions, roared on by their supporters, pressed high up the field in search of an equaliser. 

However a quick counter-attack by the home side should have put the result beyond reach but Howe's men contrived to mess up an unbelievable opportunity when Junior Stanislas' effort was chalked out for offside after the ball had been played forward to him by Pitman in a two-on-one situation with Lions keeper Forde.

Back came The Lions, and skipper Dunne's header from Gueye's corner was deflected onto the bar as Holloway's men kept pushing and probing for that leveller. 

Thankfully that second goal duly arrived when Gregory's initial shot was blocked by Boruc and Gueye steadied himself before rifling home an angled drive, sparking wild celebrations both on the pitch and off it as gutsy Millwall got exactly what they deserved. 

AFC Bournemouth: Boruc, Francis, Cook, Elphick, Surman, Pugh (Stanislas, 61mins), Arter O'Kane, 65mins), Pitman, Daniels, Kermorgant (Fraser, 78mins), Ritchie. Subs not used: Camp, Gosling, Smith, Fraser, O'Kane, Cargill.
Booking: Pugh (56mins)
Scorers: Cook (23mins), Pitman (25mins)

Millwall: Forde, Dunne, Malone, Webster, Beevers (Fuller, 46mins), Williams, Upson, McDonald, Martin (Easter, 19mins), Woolford (Gueye, 75mins), Gregory. Subs not used: King, Shittu, Angel, Powell.
Bookings: Upson (36mins), Woolford (38mins), Webster (83mins)
Scorer: Upson (74mins), Gueye (88mins)

Ref: A. Davies
Att: 10,016 (away 991)

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