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Match Report

 

Posted Tue 01 Sep 15 at 22:21 PM

Full-time score from The Den

Shaun Williams picked the perfect time to score his first goal of the season with an injury-time winner as Millwall booked their place in the JPT Second Round with a welcome victory against Peterborough United. 

With the the two teams locked at 0-0 and the game heading towards a penalty shoot-out, Williams produced a textbook header to power home a pinpoint cross from Carlos Edwards to secure The Lions' first home win after a run of four successive defeat on home soil. 

Lions boss Neil Harris handed a first start in nearly 12 months to right-back Edwards, back to full fitness following a nightmare spell on the sidelines with a knee ligament injury. 

Edwards was one of five changes made by The Lions manager who introduced a new strike partnership of John Marquis and Aiden O'Brien, whilst handing a return to the starting XI for midfielders Ed Upson and Williams. 

One of the loudest cheers of the first-half accompanied Edwards' first touch of the ball, and whilst not able to find the back of the net, the overall team display was a huge improvement on the last time out against Chesterfield. 

There were a handful of scoring chances in an open first-half, and other than a speculative hooked effort from Conor Washington, Peterborough failed to really test the Millwall defence. 

It was the home side who looked the more likely to score with midfielder Williams going close on the quarter hour mark. Picking up a squared pass from Edwards, the midfielder brushed off two challenges and let fly with a crisp 18-yard drive that hit the side netting. 

He went close again midway through the half, this time with a direct free-kick following a foul on Fred Onyedinma. On this occasion, Williams' sweetly struck shot flew a foot wide of the upright. 

Marquis turned his 36th-minute header from a Williams free-kick wide of the mark and then four minutes later perhaps should have laid the ball off to the unmarked Onyedinma instead of going for goal himself, sending a low angled shot straight into keeper Ben Alnwick's hands. 

The second-half shaped up in pretty much the same way as the first, with Williams pulling the strings in the middle of the park and three times going close from long range. 

The terrier-like Ben Thompson showed great tenacity and persistence to keep a hold of the ball under pressure, worked a yard of space and then let fly with a dipping 18-yarder on 71 minutes that bounced narrowly wide as The Lions continued to press for the opening goal. 

Less than 60 seconds later Upson ghosted into the penalty area brilliantly and saw his goalbound effort saved by Alnwick and then Mark Beevers clipped the woodwork with a deft flick from another Williams' cross, yet still that elusive goal would not come. 

Onyedinma did well to weave his way into the penalty area, but with Edwards in space on the overlap, went for goal himself and failed to make a clean connection with the ball squirming wide of the target. 

It looked as if the game was heading towards a penalty shoot-out, but when the fourth official held up the board indicating five minutes of added time, the home crowd found their voices once more and the players responded in kind. With just three minutes remaining Edwards received the ball on the right, looked up and picked out Williams with a superb deep cross that the midfielder rose majestically to head home a fine winner. 

Millwall: Archer, Edwards, Craig, Beevers, Nelson, Williams, Thompson, Onyedinma (Webster 90+4mins), O'Brien (Cowan-Hall, 81mins), Marquis (Gregory, 69mins), Upson. Subs not used: Girling, Powell. 
Bookings: Beevers (42mins), Williams, (78mins), Nelson (89mins)  
Scorer: Williams (90+2mins)   

Peterborough United: Alnwick, Taylor, Bostwick, Vassell (Couilbaly, 72mins), Maddison, Almeida Santos (Smith, 63mins), Washington, Anderson, Davey (Beautyman, 20mins), Elder, Forrester. Subs not used: Henry, Angol. 
Bookings: Vassell (35mins), Bostwick (62mins) 

Ref: K. Hill 
Att: 2,050 (away 222)

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