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Match Reports

Lions lose at the Madejski

Our take from Reading

2 November 2019

Millwall were defeated 2-1 by Reading in the Sky Bet Championship at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Jordan Obita and Sam Baldock put Reading into a two-goal lead at half-time, but Jed Wallace's solo effort halved the deficit shortly after the hour-mark. That was to be no more than a consolation strike, though, as Millwall's away day woes continued.

Gary Rowett named an unchanged side for the trip to the Madejski Stadium, but changed shape, with The Lions lining up with three at the back at kick-off.

Four minutes in, the first chance of the afternoon went the way of Millwall, but after Shaun Williams swung a corner to the back post, Shaun Hutchinson's header went wide.

With 10 minutes gone, after a brief period of pressure, Reading scored with their first shot on goal of the afternoon - Obita firing home from the edge of the penalty area with a shot that gave Bartosz Bialkowski no chance.

Three minutes later The Lions looked to get back into the game, but Shane Ferguson's deep corner was glanced wide by Murray Wallace. Millwall then broke forward, but with Mahlon Romeo open on the right-hand side, Jed Wallace's attempt at the spectacular went wrong, with his shot sailing high, wide and not so handsome.

Reading came within a lick of paint of doubling their lead on the 20-minute mark, but John Swift's free-kick hit the top of the crossbar, before Ferguson's cut-back was inviting at the other end, but no Millwall man was there to potentially score the equaliser.

As the rain poured down inside the Madejski Stadium, the next chance went the way of the hosts, but after a defensive mix-up, the ball was eventually forced behind for a corner. From that kick, Matt Miazga rose highest, but Bialkowski pulled off an outstanding save to claw the ball off the line and keep the deficit to one.

That was in vain, however, as on 37 minutes, after more slack defensive play, The Royals doubled their lead as Baldock was allowed time and space to pick his spot and fire home.

Shortly before the half-time break Ben Thompson rose to meet a cross, but he nodded wide.

Goalscorer Baldock had Bialkowski scrambling as the second-half got underway, but it was The Lions who got the third goal of the afternoon on 63 minutes as Jed Wallace showed desire and heart to strike across Reading goalkeeper Rafael Cabral and reduce the deficit with a fine individual effort.

Five minutes later, with Millwall on top for the first time in the game, Cabral's failure to claim a Murray Wallace cross saw the ball land at the feet of Tom Bradshaw, but the striker missed his kick with an open net awaiting.

The Lions had Reading penned into their own half, and a three-on-one situation could have led to the equalising goal on 72 minutes, but Jed Wallace's heavy touch took the ball away from him and allowed the ball to be cleared to safety.

Hutchinson's header skimmed wide as the last 10 minutes approached, with manager Rowett opting to bring on both Matt Smith and Connor Mahoney in the pursuit of the equalising goal.

The Madejski held its breath just before the 90-minute mark as Lions substitute Jon Dadi Bodvarsson's overhead-kick looked to be heading towards the net, but crept wide, before Smith's header at the back post bounced safely into the arms of Cabral during six minutes of stoppage-time.

Jed Wallace's shot then struck Bodvarsson as it looked to be troubling the goal, with Jake Cooper's header, which sailed over the crossbar, acting as the final Millwall chance of the game.

Reading: Cabral, Morrison, Miazga, Moore (Blackett 58'), Rinomhota, Baldock (Gomes 76'), Swift, Obita, Ejaria, Yiadom, Puscas (Meite 75'). Subs not used: Walker, McCleary, Loader, McIntyre.

Scorer: Obita 10', Baldock 37'

Booking: Yiadom

Millwall: Bialkowski, M. Wallace, Hutchinson, Cooper, Williams (Mahoney 78'), J. Wallace, Thompson, Bradshaw (Smith 78'), Ferguson (Bodvarsson 46'), Romeo, Molumby. Subs not used: Steele, McCarthy, Pearce, O'Brien.

Scorer: J. Wallace 63'

Referee: Tony Harrington

Attendance: 14,485 (1,956)

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