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Match Reports

Honours even at The Den

Lions take on Bristol City...

29 February 2020

Millwall and Bristol City battled to a 1-1 draw in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday afternoon at The Den.

Pedro Pereira gave The Robins a 10th-minute lead in South London, but Matt Smith bundled home shortly into the second-half to ensure a share of the spoils.

Three changes were made by Gary Rowett for the visit of The Robins, as Tom Bradshaw, Smith and Connor Mahoney replaced Alex Pearce, Mason Bennett and Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, who all dropped to the bench.

Skilful play from Callum O'Dowda looked to create an early chance for the visitors but the City man's looped cross was gathered by Bialkowski, despite a slight fumble due to the close attentions of The Lions' central-defensive partnership of Shaun Hutchinson and Jake Cooper.

With 10 minutes played The Robins took the lead. A corner-kick was swung in and after a few deflections and attempts to clear, the ball fell to Pereira, who left Bartosz Bialkowski a bystander as he blasted home.

Hutchinson had to make a fantastic recovery tackle to deny Adam Nagy shortly after as Famara Diedhiou beat the defender to a header higher up the pitch - and that sparked The Lions into life as a couple of opportunities presented themselves, but Mahoney slipped and Bradshaw nodded wide.

The play was now taking place in the Bristol City half, with Mahoney, Jayson Molumby and Mahlon Romeo all attempting crosses into the box, but a resolute Robins back-line was standing firm. Smith then had a left-footed attempt from the edge of the penalty area, but the ball was drilled straight into the arms of Niki Maenpaa.

City were becoming wasteful as The Lions looked to press their opponents, but for all their endeavour all Millwall could muster was a shot from distance by Romeo which flew well over.

Jed Wallace flashed an inviting cross into the box with 34 minutes played, but no Millwall man could take advantage, before another ball in found Smith, but his header was deflected - and therefore had all the power behind it taken away - before being saved by Maenpaa.

At the other end a Jamie Paterson cross had to be cleared behind by Cooper as City looked to double their lead, before yet another Jed Wallace cross was to roll across the penalty area without any Millwall touch.

The Lions could have levelled in the first minute of the second-half but Ryan Woods' volley was struck well wide. Smith's cushioned header then looked for Bradshaw, but the striker's scuffed overhead kick failed to trouble the Bristol goal.

With 51 minutes on the clock, however, The Lions were level, as an in-swinging Mahoney corner was bundled towards goal and eventually turned home by Smith.

Millwall were now a completely different prospect and were peppering The Robins' goal; two Mahoney crosses were inches from reaching their destination - the second deflected off goalscorer Pereira before hitting the side-netting - before Molumby was fouled on the edge of the penalty area but referee Andy Davies incredibly failed to blow.

Smith then saw his header stopped on the line by Maenpaa, with a delicious Woods pass setting up another attack, but after Hutchinson headed across goal neither Smith nor Cooper could direct the ball into the net.

Any attempts to gather further momentum were being thwarted by the whistle of Davies, but The Lions still came forward, with Bradshaw battling his way through the Bristol City defence before hitting the side-netting on 64 minutes.

Rowett introduced Bennett and Bodvarsson into the play in an attempt to give Millwall a cutting edge, but it was City who fashioned the next talking point as Andreas Weimann's cross struck Cooper, with the visitors appealing for handball - Davies was unmoved.

Bristol City substitute Niclas Eliasson sent a free-kick into the box with three minutes remaining which was vitally headed behind by Cooper, before The Lions had a penalty shout of their own as the clock struck the 90-minute mark as Molumby fell, but nothing was given.

Bodvarsson had a header late on, but that was saved by Maenpaa as the points were shared.

Millwall: Bialkowski, M. Wallace, Hutchinson, Cooper, J. Wallace, Bradshaw (O'Brien 85'), Smith (Bodvarsson 75'), Romeo, Molumby, Woods, Mahoney (Bennett 74'). Subs not used: Steele, Ferguson, Pearce, Skalak.

Scorer: Smith 51'

Booking: Molumby

Bristol City: Maenpaa, Dasilva, Nagy, Baker, Smith, Diedhiou, O'Dowda (Eliasson 84'), Weimann, Paterson (Wells 68'), Kalas, Pereira. Subs not used: Wollacott, Hunt, Williams, Benkovic, Massengo.

Scorer: Pereira 10'

Referee: Andy Davies

Attendance: 13,584 (1,340)

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