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Holloway claims moral victory after Millwall draw with Owls

© Nicky Hayes
© Nicky Hayes

MILLWALL manager Ian Holloway believed his side were unfortunate not to take all three points against Sheffield Wednesday.

The Lions came from behind to snatch a draw thanks to DJ Campbell's equaliser at The Den on Tuesday night, but Holloway felt the home side would have been worthy winners.

"In a boxing match, you know if the other bloke was a bit better than you – and Wednesday damn well know that tonight," Holloway said.

"We need points but for me that is a moral victory. I believe this team would have failed a couple of weeks ago with a lack of spirit – we'd have gone two or three goals behind.

"My players are raging in the dressing room because they thought they deserved to win. I felt we were the better team, and the longer the game went on, the better we got.

"I was excited by our recovery and I thought we were going to win it."

Holloway admitted it took Millwall a while to adjust to Wednesday's 3-5-2 formation.

"Wednesday played a different shape – we weren't expecting them to do that because they haven't played that way in their last four or five games," he said.

"I tried to change our system during the game. I wanted to go with Bailey, Woolford and Trotter pushing on, but we needed to have two midfielders dropping back.

"They had a bloke sitting off Bailey who made it almost impossible for us to do the passing that we've been working on.

"I kept trying to tell our players to get two midfielders back and leave one in the pocket, because that way their player couldn't close down both of them at the same time.

"In the second half, we did do that and we were much better."

With the score at 1-0, the Lions had a strong appeal for a penalty turned down when sub Campbell was barged over inside the area.

"You [the referee] can't get it that wrong," Holloway said. "I thought that was a penalty . It was a push – it was unbelievable.

"Then the referee tried to be really brave.

"It was as if he thought, 'I'm going to be so strong because I'm at Millwall, and I'm not going to show weakness,' and then we didn't get a decision after that.

"There was a blatant handball by the goalkeeper in stoppage time as well."

But the real talking point of the evening was official Lee Probert's decision to send off Shane Lowry and Owls goalscorer Giles Coke after a mass brawl.

"I've got to make sure we stay calm," Holloway said. "They should have had a bloke sent off, and we shouldn't have retaliated. It doesn't make you brave getting sent off as well.

"If you get kicked, you go down on the floor and lie there. How professional were they? If you look at Miguel Llera in the first half, I'm sure he hasn't got any bruises on his leg.

"He was rolling around on the floor and I thought he was dead at first – then he gets up and takes the free kick! Call it what you like, it's professionalism as well.

"By the letter of the law both players had to be sent off."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

18 thoughts on “Holloway claims moral victory after Millwall draw with Owls

  • January 29, 2014 at 01:08
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    Listened to the game online and the big difference for me was when we went down, the instinct in me was thinking "oh here we go again. We'll lose 2-0 or 3-0" but then they clawed back and should have won the damn thing. Ollie's comments make me feel better about everything, especially that it sounds like the fire is back.

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    • January 29, 2014 at 06:15
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      @BetaMale:
      Trouble is we seem to still be getting appointed incompetent officials & that I'm afraid (irrespective of Holloway's impressive team re-structuring) is going to & always will be our achilles heel. I really hope that JB or AA can have a quiet chat with the FL about the situation in the summer coz it's gonna scupper any serious push for promotion. God forbid it may even scupper our survival plans this season!

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  • January 29, 2014 at 03:35
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    We went there as usual, and although Millwall were not as sharp as in the ipswich game, they played well. Midfield is where we seem to be SOFT . Trotter his usual lazy self. Good to see Campbell score, after good pressure. Bring on Reading!

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    • January 29, 2014 at 12:18
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      @BUSHWACKER14: I don't know whats up with Bailey, when we were after him he was going to be our midfield enforcer, looks more like a p**** cat then a lion and a fat one at that !

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  • January 29, 2014 at 06:32
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    ref was an absolute c….unt dj was flattened for a nailed on pen, goalie handball outside area, but worst of all martin's miss. roll on sat for another poor official.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 08:31
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    The den is always going to be an intimidating place to come, so we'll always get officials who want to brag about how they came down and gave nothing to their mates next time they're in the boozer.

    With regards to the fight, I don't think Lowry or any of the team were in the wrong, and it was nice to see a bit of passion. Especially from Bywater, hopefully that will silence the 'he's west ham' brigade.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 09:03
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    Nice to see the fighting spirit we have now,a few weeks ago they would have slaughtered us,we still need to gel and gain confidence,some of our first touches were diabolical,roll on Saturday and let's see more improvement.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 09:45
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    Millwall need to put a seasons highlights video together of our referees performances and show the fa what we have to put up with every week, go and bang on their door and show them we ain't puting up with it.
    The moron who threw the bottle isn't helping but a few weeks ago Liverpool fans attacked and stabbed but our bottle throwing still attacks more attention.
    What more can we do!

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    • January 29, 2014 at 16:39
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      @jdt1885: I totally agree. Other clubs have done it and we would have enough footage to prove something is seriously corrupt with the officials that are being sent to referee our games. All clubs have bad decisions go against them but I can’t imagine any others have this much. It happens so often I can’t help but think it is a conspiracy theory to try to relegate us.

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    • January 29, 2014 at 19:50
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      @jdt1885: a few years ago the f,a was written to in a very professional way and asking them in no certain terms ,why inept refs and linesman turned up on a regular basis at our football club.the letter was three a4 pages long stipulating glaring errors and judgements made by officials in many itemised matches.this letter was copied five times the original being the sixth one.yes it took all six letters sent at intervals to receive a reply 9 months later and this was there reply, "you re comments have been noted and recorded for our file" end of reply in other words you do not matter to us in any shape or form.thats why I never watch overinflated England anymore !

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  • January 29, 2014 at 09:55
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    My blood is boiling just reading about this game couldn't be there so I have to read all about it.
    I am afraid it don't make good reading the frustration I get from these readings and the sports media's comments. I am feeling sorry for all and sundry who played and watched it all unfold
    Better luck next time to all I hope we turn over Reading

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  • January 29, 2014 at 11:03
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    Well a moral victory it may be but it is still only 1 point won, I am also not one to have a go at the ref but I must say the guy last night had a bad 75 mins, Lowery should never had gone it was a yelloww all the way, and Kirkland should have had a Red for being a grass, how he can live with himself I dont know.

    But it all comes down to Millwall slipping back into some bad practices after the first 20 minutes and I know this will start some of you off but there are still players who started and who came on who are just not good enough at this level, and it showed big time, Wednesday are not a really good side, the boy up front No 24 look like a Sunday League player and not a good one, and for such a lump he was easily done by Bywater (first one in to help Lowery) Millwall Now I hope you all agree.

    I think the penny must have dropped for Ollie that the honeymoon is over tough descisions need to be made in the next 2 days about moving people on quickly, on a positive note I thought Campell and Williams did ok and look good loan signings , but as for Keogh up front too light weight and no pace Baileys distrubuiton was all over the place and IMO I thought that Malone did not have his best game at the club last night.

    Fenney well words evade me on him I leave that up to all of you.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 11:14
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    Bottle throwers need to stop, FA are dying to relegate us it's a great excuse for them to take points off us, so please think about it you knobs before you sink us good and proper.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 11:57
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    It is very true that Malone, Keogh, Bailey along with Chaplow, And a couple more can leave and make way for New Talent . Ollie knows now, he needs to build the team around Forde, Lowry and Marvelous Shittu. Somebody once said on here tha we have WEB-SH*TT*R's on here who seem to like the Non - Triers, they need to change as well.

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  • January 29, 2014 at 13:43
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    Totally agree with Ollie we were far the better side and if we had got the two nailed on penalties and Martin had put his 3 chances away it would have been a comfortable win. Gonna be a tough game on Saturday against Reading who are banging in the goals, after scoring so many they must be due a bad day in front of goal......surely

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  • January 29, 2014 at 14:47
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    Millwall played some great football last night yes the ref was a cheat think we gave the ball away alot and missed some great chances we need to Finnish off when it's one on one with the keeper fennet worked is socks off well done to the boy he was involved in everything up front shitto was a rock yes we should of won but lets remember two weeks ago lets all be proud we are moving forward sing your hearts out for the boys

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  • January 29, 2014 at 14:49
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    Trotter is singled out as being lazy by those who want a "like" which is pathetic. The real culprits where

    Bailey
    Martin
    Feeney

    Start with them three jokers, Martin makes the effort but his control is terrible and he couldn't hit a barn door from six inches.

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    • January 29, 2014 at 21:59
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      I totally agree. Feeney gives the impression he is fast and skilful but he ain't either. He is totally out of his depth at this level and personally I would not play him again....I would rather get Dunny to play on the wing as he at least knows what to do even if he can't always do it.

      Martin and Bailey are not much better but I see a little more in them and I am sure holloway can get the best from them... There is nothing more to get from Feeney.

      As for Trotter he is always going to have his lazy periods but when he is good he is very good. Needs a rocket up his backside but too good to let go.

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