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Match Reports

Four-midable Lions ease to victory over Norwich City

Our report as The Lions secure their first Championship victory of the season...

26 August 2017

Goals from Lee Gregory, George Saville, Jed Wallace and Shaun Hutchinson eased Millwall to a first Sky Bet Championship success of the 2017/18 season on Saturday afternoon at The Den with a thumping 4-0 victory over Norwich City.

Birthday boy Gregory gave Millwall the lead on 15 minutes, with Saville doubling the advantage just two minutes later.

Wallace made it 3-0 before half-time, with Hutchinson crashing a header home late on to add the gloss of a fourth.

Following Tuesday night's 3-1 after extra time Carabao Cup Second Round defeat at Reading, Neil Harris reverted back to the team that drew 0-0 with Bristol City at Ashton Gate last weekend.

The Canaries started strongly and had efforts on goal through Mario Vrancic and Josh Murphy, but Scotland stopper Jordan Archer was up to the task.

It was The Lions, however, that took the lead on 15 minutes with their first real chance of the game. Shaun Williams' diagonal ball found Steve Morison who, on his 250th appearance for the club, headed down into the path of Gregory who slotted past Angus Gunn to open the scoring.

Just under two minutes later, Millwall had a second. Gregory unselfishly rolled the ball to Aiden O'Brien, but the ball was behind the run of the Irishman. Although, as Gunn came out to block a potential shot, O'Brien teed up Saville who struck a low shot past the reach of two defenders and into the bottom corner.

On 24 minutes, Archer was called into action once more, expertly tipping wide Nelson Oliveira's vicious strike, with the number one again making himself big to stop Murphy's attempt from close-range on the half-hour mark.

The chances kept coming at both ends with the first-half drawing to a close - Gregory's spectacular overhead kick on 40 minutes nearly producing a Millwall third.

It didn't take long for another to arrive, however, as on 42 minutes, The Lions took advantage of some poor Norwich defending following their own throw-in, with Wallace pouncing to strike home from the edge of the penalty area.

Two minutes into the second-half there should have been a simple fourth for Millwall, but O'Brien's shot from close-range took a slight deflection before skimming off the crossbar.

Daniel Farke looked to shore up Norwich's leaky defence with a double change shortly before the hour-mark, but at the other end, The Canaries were toothless - Oliveira's attempt, which was curled wide of the target, the only shot of note.

Morison nearly sealed his landmark appearance with a goal 20 minutes from time, but his volley from Wallace's cross ended up going out for a throw-in.

The fourth goal did come on 72 minutes, however, as Hutchinson powerfully met Shaun Williams' corner-kick and headed into the net.

Gregory, Wallace and Saville all left the field to standing ovations as they were replaced by Ryan Tunnicliffe - for his home and Championship debut - Shane Ferguson and Fred Onyedinma respectively, with The Lions seeing out the remainder of the match with ease to secure their first, long overdue and well deserved League win of the campaign.

Millwall: Archer, McLaughlin, Meredith, Hutchinson, Williams, Gregory (Tunnicliffe 74'), Wallace (Ferguson 78'), Webster, Morison, O'Brien, Saville (Onyedinma 84'). Subs not used: King, Craig, Elliott, Cooper.

Scorer: Gregory 15', Saville 17', Wallace 42', Hutchinson 72'

Booking: Saville, Webster

Norwich City: Gunn, Pinto, Husband, Reed (Steipermann 58'), Martin (Zimmermann 59'), Vrancic, Oliveira, Murphy, Hoolahan, Maddison (Tettey 75'), Franke. Subs not used: McGovern, Naismith, Trybull.

Booking: Husband

Referee: Tony Harrington

Attendance: 12,671


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