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Match Reports

Saville nets as Lions draw with Bolton

Our take on The Lions' first home game back in the Sky Bet Championship...

12 August 2017

George Saville scored his first Millwall goal as The Lions drew 1-1 with Bolton Wanderers on an enthralling Saturday afternoon at The Den in the Sky Bet Championship.

A superb team goal gave The Lions the lead on 49 minutes, but former Millwall winger Filipe Morais curled a free-kick home just after the hour-mark to ensure a share of the spoils.

Lions boss Neil Harris was forced into two changes from the 1-0 opening day defeat over Nottingham Forest, with Byron Webster and Shane Ferguson stepping in for the injured Jake Cooper and Aiden O'Brien.

Millwall's first half-chance of the game came on 15 minutes, but Jed Wallace's was just unable to connect with Ferguson's inviting cross. Steve Morison tried his luck from distance six minutes later, but could only find the arms of Trotters goalkeeper Mark Howard.

Wallace burst into the box on 29 minutes, but was swarmed by the Bolton defence just as he was about to pull the trigger. The lively winger latched on to Morison's through-ball mere seconds later, but his first touch just evaded him on the edge of the penalty area.

On 49 minutes, The Lions took the lead. A fantastic passing move between Saville, Morison and Lee Gregory saw the former receive the ball in time to slot a cool finish past Howard. The strike was the midfielder's first in a Millwall shirt.

Substitute and former Millwall man Filipe Morais injected new life into The Trotters shortly after, but he pinpoint cross could only be headed wide by Adam Le Fondre. The impressive Saville rose to meet Ferguson's corner-kick on 56 minutes, but was unable to get over the ball, heading wide instead.

The home side almost doubled their lead in bizarre circumstances on 59 minutes, but after Morison steered Saville's shot towards goal, Mark Beevers was on hand to head over the crossbar as a stranded Howard looked on.

With 62 minutes on the clock, Bolton levelled through Morais, who curled his free-kick beyond the reach of the wall and Jordan Archer in the Lions net.

With the tempo of the game and the atmosphere inside The Den both upping a notch, Gregory tested Howard, but the stopper was equal to his effort, tipping it wide for a corner-kick.

On 86 minutes, the ball found its way to Morison at the back post, but his goal-bound shot was expertly blocked by Beevers.

In the dying embers, Shaun Williams' long-range drive was turned behind by Howard and after the corner-kick was cleared, referee Andy Davies blew time on a captivating contest, with both sides settling for their first Sky Bet Championship point of the season.

Millwall: Archer, McLaughlin, Meredith, Hutchinson, Williams, Gregory (Elliott 82'), Ferguson (Onyedinma 77'), Wallace, Webster, Morison, Saville. Subs not used: King, Craig, Worrall, Thompson, Cooper.

Scorer: Saville 49'

Booked: Hutchinson, McLaughlin

Bolton Wanderers: Howard, Little (Morais 53'), Taylor, Dervite, Beevers, Karacan, Le Fondre (Armstrong 69'), Madine (Wilbraham 83'), Cullen, Pratley, Burke. Subs not used: Alnwick, Buckley, Robinson, Osede.

Scorer: Morais 62'

Booked: Burke, Taylor, Karacan

Referee: Andy Davies

Attendance: 12,238

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