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Report: Millwall U18s 1 Crystal Palace U18s 2

1 December 2014

Young Lions pipped by Palace

Millwall were denied a share of the spoils in Saturday's U18s League derby clash with Crystal Palace by a Man of the Match winning display from visiting keeper Oliver Pain.

The Eagles' young Australian stopper proved virtually unbeatable as he produced a succession of top-notch saves to deny Millwall at least a point that their performance deserved.
Following the early sparring the young Lions almost made the breakthrough on 10 minutes when a finely flighted ball from Noah Chesmain into the path of Jamie Philpot was plucked off his outstretched foot by keeper Pain.

Minutes later Alex Mulrooney-Skinner steered a good chance into the Palace side netting. Action swiftly reverted to the other end of the pitch and against the run of play a superbly curled effort by Andre Coker beat keeper Max Goodman to put the visitors surprisingly into the lead.

The home side continued to pressurise the Palace goal with some delightful build up play which eventually paid off when Mikael Ndjoli fired home from just inside the area to deservedly level matters.

Lions defender James Brown produced a 50 yard run upfield which was brought to an abrupt halt by a foul. from the resulting free-kick, Ndjoli's crisply-struck effort was turned around the post by the keeper.

Millwall were denied again by keeper Pain, who expertly beat Mulrooney-Skinner to the ball following an inch perfect pass from defender Chris Parr as the home side pressed Palace right up until the half-time whistle.

The Lions had far more of the second period in terms of possession and attacking play but time and again failed to make the final pass pay dividends.

However it was the visitors who edged ahead in the 66th-minute when Coker turned provider, beating two defenders and cutting the ball back for Corie Andrews, who hit it first time for his seventh goal of the season. 

Thereafter it was Millwall who dominated for long spells with Ebere Eze firing wide of both the advancing keeper and upright before Ndjoli’s fierce strike from six yards was blocked on the line by a defender with goalkeeper Pain beaten.

The Lions were desperately close to levelling the score late on when Chesmain's stinging freekick, after Ndloli was brought down, was brilliantly pushed aside by Pain before Brown drilled the follow-up into the side netting. 

However it was not to be and Palace dug in resolutely to deny Millwall an equaliser during the dying stages as they hung on for a third successive win.

Millwall: Goodman (Girling, 27mins.). Brown, Chesmain, Bryon, Parr, Dexter, Mulrooney-Skinner, Fitzgerald, Philpott (Leighton, 60mins.), Ebere (Ebouzome, 79mins), Ndjoli. Subs not used: Bray, Day.

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