MILLWALL boss Neil Harris was pleased with his side’s performance in the victory over Port Vale last night – but sounded a warning before Saturday’s visit to The Den of Southend.
The Lions dominated the first half at Vale Park and should have been well ahead at the break.
Aiden O’Brien, Ed Upson and Steve Morison all had efforts cleared off the line in the opening 15 minutes as the away side tore into their opponents from the first whistle.
It was a high-energy start that should have yielded at least a couple of goals, but Millwall then had to be thankful before the break when Jordan Archer produced a brilliant reflex save to tip Enoch Andoh’s bullet header from just six yards over the bar.
Harris’ side had to be resolute in the second half as Port Vale came more into it.
Centre-backs Byron Webster and Mark Beevers set the tone with some defiant blocks on the edge of their box and Beevers’ goal and Lee Gregory’s penalty ensured Millwall wouldn’t regret those early missed opportunities.
“We were really unlucky in the first half,” Harris said. “We could have had five or six. It’s a credit to the boys, it’s their hunger and desire.
“The second half was much more even but we still came out on top.
“We’ve got good players, we’ve got good goalscorers. Aiden O’Brien scored a hat-trick at the weekend, he had two great efforts and Steve Morison did too.
“Steve won’t have two better headers than that and not score a goal. And then you’re bringing Lee Gregory on, Aiden is tired and you can bring John Marquis on.
“These players can score goals. Ed Upson as well, the positions he gets into, the chances he’s getting, one’s going to eventually go in.
“He’s too good a finisher not to be scoring goals. We all know Shaun Williams’ quality on the ball as well 25 yards from the goal and he had two shots blocked.
“It was chance after chance, but we’re making the chances and that’s the main thing.
“In the second half it goes to show that you go to away grounds and teams are going to have spells on top. You’ve no divine right at any club to go into a division and think you’re going to have the ball for 90 minutes and win the game comfortably.
“We’ve won three away games and the other sides have had possession and chances, it’s going to happen.
“What we have to realise as a football club is it’s going to happen at The Den also. We can’t dominate the game for 94 minutes, 98 minutes.
“The other team are going to have the football. We’ve got to be patient.
“We’ve got a style of play but we want it to be a winning style.”