Millwall boss Gary Rowett not happy with aspects of his side’s play despite third straight Championship win

Gary Rowett was left unimpressed by Millwall’s performance in tonight’s 2-0 win over Birmingham City.

The South Londoners made it three Championship wins on the spin for the first time since the start of 2019.

Jed Wallace punished an undercooked backpass by Mikel San Jose in the third minute. Ben Thompson converted Shaun Hutchinson’s cross with 15 minutes remaining to wrap up the points.

Millwall were denied a penalty and red card for Harlee Dean early in the second period, the officials not spotting that the Blues centre-back had used his hand to keep out a Matt Smith shot.

Rowett said: “It was a poor performance, in certain ways, on the ball.

“For 10 or 15 minutes we got into the final third and I thought a team like Birmingham, down near the bottom, I felt would be nervous. The goal comes from it. Mason [Bennett] wins a flick, Jed gambles and the defender underhits a backpass. That’s the sort of thing that happens to you when you’re down there and haven’t won many games.

“It was a good start but after that Birmingham were much better than us, without causing too many clearcut problems. Dean stepped past our forwards and got into that little right-hand side position. It just meant we couldn’t get out. Because we couldn’t pass with any real fluidity we couldn’t get out like we wanted to.

“That’s always the challenge when you play that formation.

“We were a little better but not massively better second half when we changed formation. We got a bit more of a foothold when Billy came on. We started to win a few things. We should have had a penalty. It was a clearcut penalty and I’m very disappointed that the officials didn’t see it, that’s happened quite a lot this season so far.

“There was a spell of games where we were drawing too many. We’ve lost pretty similar games to the top six, we’ve just drawn too many. That’s been our challenge. Seven games ago there was one part of the games where Rotherham were winning 1-0 and we were three or four points off the bottom three. Even I was starting to get a little edgy about that. We changed formation around then and started to get back to what we’re good at – which is a rugged, defensively-minded team. We’ve won four and drawn three against some really good opponents. There is Norwich and Watford in there…some excellent sides.

“The players have shown what they are all about. It’s a really good run of results.”


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