Holloway defends Millwall's disciplinary record this season

© Millwall FC
© Millwall FC

STATS suggest Millwall are the dirtiest team in the Championship – but Ian Holloway believes a mindset among referees leads to more fouls being given against his side.

The Lions have the division's worst disciplinary record, both in terms of free kicks conceded (428) and red and a yellow cards (60 and four).

But Holloway does not believe those figures acurately reflect Millwall's style of play and instead feels officials make a conscious effort to stamp their authority on the Lions.

"This is what we've got to fight against and this is what I mean when I say referees try to stand up to the atmosphere at The Den," he said.

"They come here with a mindset that they won't be intimidated. We're the away team every week – that's how it feels.

"It's as if the referees feel they have to even things up before the game has already started and I've never seen that with any other team.

"Sometimes our players get caught up in the atmosphere and throw themselves into tackles to please our crowd, but I don't see a fair balance week in, week out.

"The worst game this season was Watford away.

"Five of my lads were booked and 18 free kicks were given against us even though we had most of the possession. We must have been fouling people when we had the ball!

"And recently refeees have been saying that Diego Fabbrini goes looking for free kicks. But when he turns away from tackles and runs past people, he's getting kicked!

"When you're kicked, of course you're going to go down. But they're saying he goes down too easily, which makes no sense to me, because surely you're either fouled or not?"

Significantly more fouls have been awarded against Millwall (428) than any other team. Reading (395), Bolton (393) and Blackpool (388) are behind the Lions in the foul table.

Holloway added: "Am I surprised by those statistics? No, not really, after what I've seen this season and some of the amazing fouls that get given against us.

"I just want it to be the same for both teams and I don't see that. How can we be so far apart from everyone else? I don't get it.

"I don't know why that is and I'm sure other people would say the same about their team, but those stats prove it.

"Maybe I should sing a little song – it begins 'no one likes us, we don't care!'"

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

20 thoughts on “Holloway defends Millwall's disciplinary record this season

  • February 13, 2015 at 11:05
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    NOLU...

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  • February 13, 2015 at 11:06
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    There's me thinking football was a contact sport and played by men.of course there will be fouls..but is ours any worse then anyone else probably not.

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    • February 14, 2015 at 08:21
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      @Jim28: you must be thinking of rugby

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