League One preview: Millwall vs. Coventry City

MILLWALL boss Neil Harris will have his options boosted by the return of a number of players for this weekend’s Sky Bet League One meeting with Coventry at The Den.

Shane Ferguson and Jimmy Abdou trained on Thursday after they missed the 1-1 draw with Bradford last Saturday when they were away on international duty.

Midfielder Calum Butcher is in line to make his first appearance at home since his switch from Burton Albion last month.

Harris said Joe Martin wasn’t feeling any ill-effects from the clash with the Bantams this week after struggling through the fixture with a muscle pain in his shoulder.

Lee Gregory was hoping to train on Thursday, but he won’t be risked if he doesn’t show he has fully recovered from a hip problem.

Coventry defeated Millwall twice in the league last season, including winning 4-0 at The Den, but have struggled this season and only Rochdale are below them in the League One table.

The attacking pace and flair given to them in 2015-16 by Adam Armstrong, Ryan Kent and Jacob Murphy – who were all on loan – has been diminished and boss Tony Mowbray will hope Marvin Sordell can rediscover the form that saw him play in the Olympics for Great Britain in 2012 and earn a £3million move to Bolton.

The Sky Blues have hit the back of the net just twice in the league but will be boosted by the return of exciting 18-year-old attacker Jodi Jones.

Chris McCann, one of 12 summer signings, is a doubt, while Australian midfielder Andy Rose is still some way off full fitness.

Andrew Wright could make his second appearance against Millwall in 10 days after playing for 20 minutes in the 2-0 defeat at Fleetwood last weekend following his loan switch from West Brom.

Boss Tony Mowbray has been playing three at the back this season and admitted he doesn’t yet have the personnel to pick his favoured four in defence.

He told Coventry Telegraph: “A lot of our success last season was based around our counter attacking style with Murphy, Armstrong and Kent and the team sort of slipped into a defensive mode and broke away very fast on the counter attack and teams couldn’t handle it.

“This year’s a completely different team that we have put together and the team has to emerge. Hopefully somewhere along the line we’ll find the right centre-half to play a four on a regular basis but at this moment I don’t think it’s beneficial to us.

Millwall record against Coventry:

Played 72

Won 29  Drawn 13  Lost 30

Form guide:

Millwall: WLWWD

Coventry: LLDWL

Probable Millwall team:

Millwall: 4-4-2: Archer; Romeo, Webster, Craig, Martin; Worrall, Thompson, Williams, Ferguson; O’Brien, Morison.

Image source: ©Millwall FC

John Kelly