Millwall boss almost subbed off scorer Billy Mitchell – and gives verdict on 4-1 win over Bristol City

BY ALEX GRACE

Gary Rowett was delighted with Millwall’s performance as they ended their home campaign with a 4-1 victory over Bristol City.

Jed Wallace, Scott Malone, Billy Mitchell and Tom Bradshaw all got on the scoresheet as Millwall comprehensively beat their visitors. It’s the second season in a row that they have ended their home campaign with 4-1 wins.

“There’s not much to play for so you have that little question in the back of your mind whether the players can put a performance on full of strong mentality and energy,” said Rowett. “I shouldn’t really have doubted the group because they’ve done that for most of the season. It was a fantastic advert for their attitude, spirit and togetherness.

“Right from the off we made sure that our mentality was strong and really looked like we wanted to put a good performance in, in the last game.

“It’s been a difficult season as we all know, with no fans, so it was something that we spoke about – to give the fans at least a little bit of positivity to go into next season in the last home game if they’re watching at home. We started really well, we moved the ball fantastically well – probably the best we’ve moved the ball and passed the ball. The control we had created good opportunities and we scored a good first goal where you thought maybe Jed could square it, and maybe should square it, but when he gets that chance he’s so clinical – I’m glad he didn’t. It was a good way to start the game.

“We let them back in it a little bit. We were passing the ball too well at times and started to get a little open, a little sloppy and gave them a couple of opportunities – they scored one and then it was really whether we could respond and we did that. From there on in, we controlled the rest of the match quite comfortably.”

Danny McNamara in action in the 4-1 win over Bristol City

Billy Mitchell scored his first goal for the club in the 57th minute – Millwall’s third of the game – with Rowett full of praise for the academy product.

“He was good again, Bill. I nearly took him off at one point in the second half because he’d been booked, I didn’t want to lose a game by going down to 10 men. He’s been excellent again – he’ll have plenty of opportunities to play in front of fans and he’ll know how important performances like this are to someone like him to make sure that he gives himself a chance of being in a strong position next season when the fans do come back.”

Millwall have lacked goals from their midfield this season aside from Jed Wallace who now has 11 goals to his name – one more than last season.

Mitchell could add goals from the centre of the pitch. Rowett said: “He’s got the energy to get into those forward positions. We’ve seen it again where Jed, playing in a wider position – he’s not an out and out striker, he hasn’t played there all season – gets 11 goals and we need players that are going to be in similar numbers.”

 


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