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Millwall boss comforted by performance despite cup exit

© Keith Gillard
© Keith Gillard

IAN Holloway had mixed feelings after a much-changed Millwall side suffered a 2-0 Capital One Cup defeat at the hands of Southampton on Tuesday night.

The Lions boss made nine changes to the side that lost 1-0 to Rotherham on Saturday, handing starts to a mixture of youngsters, squad players and those in need of fitness after injury spells.

After an even first half, the Saints' Premier League class told in the second, with goals from Jack Cork and Graziano Pelle giving the visitors a comfortable margin of victory.

"To be honest with you I feel absolutely gutted," said Holloway after the game.

"I really enjoyed the first half, I really did. When I saw their team sheet, I thought ‘oh my god, what have I done’.

"I knew making changes was the right thing to do because our lads looked tired on Saturday – the attacking element of the team looked a bit flat. So I wanted to give this team a chance.

"I needed to give John Marquis a chance because he’s a big fella who can deal with a ball from back to front, but I knew I was taking a risk.

"We had one day to prepare them and we had to play a different way. We played a midfield diamond and to ask a new team, which had just come together, to do that was a risk.

"I'm absolutely delighted with the way they did it and I feel bitterly disappointed that the free header we had in the first half went out for a throw in and their free header went straight in.

"That's the difference. We didn’t do our job at a corner. You can’t let someone run free and head it from that distance. I'm gutted about that.

"But they're a Premier League side, they've sold all sorts of players and when I saw they were playing their main team I thought the score could've been anything.

"But it didn't feel like that – in fact it felt great at half time. Now I feel a little bit disappointed because we've lost again and the bubble’s burst a little bit – we've got to win on Saturday now.

"Southampton's people congratulated us for how we played, how we rotated and how we moved the ball."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

22 thoughts on “Millwall boss comforted by performance despite cup exit

  • August 27, 2014 at 10:21
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    got to say after seeing the starting my XI's I was surprised to see how well we coped last night..

    definitely a worthwhile exercise giving a few kids a run out, with young Powell very much showing Josh Wright how it should be done!

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    • August 27, 2014 at 11:38
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      @lions404: I hoped that Josh wright would come good this season, but after seeing Powell last night I can't see him being behind Wright in the pecking order.

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      • August 27, 2014 at 14:02
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        @glyngo: I really hope you are right Glyngo.

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  • August 27, 2014 at 10:23
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    Tin pot cup! ah well back to the league then COYL

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  • August 27, 2014 at 10:31
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    Agree that Blackpool is a must win game.
    Trouble is looking at our fixtures in September/October if we still do not have the Goalscorer we desperately need I fear we will be struggling in the League again by then.
    Come on IH push the boat out and get that striker.

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    • August 27, 2014 at 12:03
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      @Longfield Lion: agreed longfield, as always our concern is where are the goals coming from. A good show last night, we could've got battered but we held our own in the first half against a decent footballing side. Another good point is that ollie is prepared to change his formations. Although I agree with his tactics, we just are good enough YET to apply them. Think we need a 4-4-2 or a 3-4-1-2 formation to take the pressure off the lone striker. Still keeping the faith and proud to be a lion

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      • August 27, 2014 at 15:16
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        @Geoff the lion: what d*** heads leave a dislike to a comment without saying why? Not saying my posts are right, just my opinion based on the squad we have. Yes we need another striker but thats old news!

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  • August 27, 2014 at 10:49
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    Two things IH no more talk about players being tired the more you say it the more excuses the players will have for not playing well. Number 2 get a striker like James Hanson from Bradford

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  • August 27, 2014 at 10:52
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    steve morison or ngog are doing nothingthey better than what we got or just play gregory ffs

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    • August 27, 2014 at 11:40
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      @DELBOY64: Morison had his chance to impress last season and faield to delivery, and Ngog never really did much at any of the British clubs he played at. I personally wouldn't want either in this team.

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    • August 27, 2014 at 12:06
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      @DELBOY64: please stop with the Morrison bit. We need better

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  • August 27, 2014 at 11:26
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    Ffs IH, please stop going on about players being tired, lucky they don't have my job digging holes under ground for 10 hrs a day

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  • August 27, 2014 at 11:41
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    John Marquis did so well last night, he should get some time on the pitch on Saturday. Maybe last 25 minutes of the second half.

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    • August 27, 2014 at 12:06
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      I agree thought marquis did well last night , thought chaplow had good first half, thought hoyte and Briggs looked slow through out the game ?@glyngo:

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    • August 27, 2014 at 12:07
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      @glyngo: agreed, but at another club. Might be good in the future but at the moment he'd be taking a good mans shirt IMO

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  • August 27, 2014 at 12:05
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    I agree thought marquis did well last night , thought chaplow had good first half, thought hoyte and Briggs looked slow through out the game ?

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  • August 27, 2014 at 12:05
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    Who fancies this team for Saturday....
    Forde
    Edwards-Dunne-Beevers-Malone
    Williams-Powell
    Martin-Gueye-Woolford
    Gregory

    Wouldn't change the back 4, as it's been largely very good this season! Williams is the first name on the team sheet for me and i would play Powell for experience and confidence! Plus those two can seriously pass the ball! Would play Gueye centrally, in place of McDonald. McDonald has been good this season, but i think Gueye is more dangerous and can create more out of nothing. Then i would play Gregory and give him 90 minutes. We need a goalscorer, everyone can see that, so why not play someone who knows where the net is and got more than 30 goals last season? Will also be a confidence boost after him not playing against Rotherham and Southampton.

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    • August 27, 2014 at 12:12
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      @James_SE16: nice formation but still concerned with a lone front man. I'd try Gregory with fuller, might be a good combination!!!!!

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  • August 27, 2014 at 13:00
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    I agree that williams' passing was excellent last night, but I would estimate that he lost 60% of his headers (if not more) and really struggled against his marker, be that Pelle or Hunt (they switched sides a few times). I thought that defensively, he was poor.

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  • August 27, 2014 at 14:03
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    Congratulations to all the team for last night, they done us proud , Ollie made changes & let a few new ones have a run , where as southampton sent their first team, you wouldnt be far surprised if we had got a tonking last night , but we didnt , we held our own & more .

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  • August 27, 2014 at 14:13
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    Mixed feelings on Marquis' performance last night. Seemed to get the ball well enough, but every time he had it he seemed to just run straight into a Southampton player, rather than get his head up and look around him...
    He could well still be good for us but needs more game time to develop, something im not sure we have time for at the moment.

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  • August 27, 2014 at 17:39
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    Thought the youth team plus Fordey, Williams, Jimmy and Webster played really well. We knocked the ball around nicely and had the better of the first half. Second half their millionaire budget showed, but still good performances from the 3 youth team subs.

    A good workout and experience in the tin pot cup

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