Big week for Millwall will reveal level, admits boss

MILLWALL manager Neil Harris was “pleased with the majority” of his side’s performance at MK Dons on Saturday but wants his players to learn from “the crazy period” in the first half when Kieran Agard scored a double to drag his side level from two goals down.

The Lions had gone 2-0 up when first Ed Upson only succeeded in diverting Tony Craig’s header into the back of his own net when trying to clear, and then David Worrall got his first Millwall goal two minutes later when he volleyed home Aiden O’Brien’s chipped cross.

But Agard wasted little time justifying the club-record fee MK Dons splashed out on him last week when he took advantage of two defensive mistakes to make it 2-2.

In between Agard’s two strikes Millwall midfielder Shaun Williams was withdrawn injured to be replaced with Jimmy Abdou, but Harris took the positives after a clash against a side he believes will be one of the leading lights in League One this season after their relegation from the Championship.

“They were buzzing and bright at the start and we were a little bit sluggish. But then we went two up and I thought we looked comfortable with no threat whatsoever against us,” Harris said.

“Then there is a crazy five-minute spell when we lose two goals and an experienced player in the middle of the park.

“We had a little bit of a wobble but I got the boys in at half-time and told them to relax. I was a little bit disappointed. In the second half I wanted us to be a little bit more aggressive in our approach and really get after MK Dons with and without the ball and I was really pleased with the second-half performance.”

“We knew it was going to be a tough game because they’re a team that has just come out of the Championship. They’ve got some real quality in their team, Karl has recruited well and paid good money for (Agard) who has already repaid him with a couple of goals. We knew it was a difficult challenge at the start of a really tough week for us.

“They’ve got some real attacking flair, they’re going to be a real threat this year. They’re going to be in or around the top six, I’d imagine, so it was a good test for both teams.

“I was pleased with the majority of the game but we can learn from the crazy period when we conceded two goals.”

Millwall next face Peterborough on Tuesday night before clashing with promotion rivals Sheffield United on Saturday, and Harris admitted the outcome of both fixtures will give an indication of the level his side are at so far this season.

“If we can have a big week it will give us a real foothold in the division and set us in good stead to know where we are against the top sides at this level.

“I think the league is better this year than last year and I think we saw that on Saturday.”

Meanwhile, Shane Ferguson also came off injured late on and with Williams will be assessed before the trip to play the Posh tomorrow evening.

Image source ©Millwall FC