NEIL Harris revealed he told his players he wasn’t happy with the concession of a goal against Gillingham – but paid tribute to them for a “fantastic effort” in winning three successive League One games.
The Lions followed up victories over Charlton and Swindon with a 2-1 defeat of the Gills on Friday night.
Lee Gregory gave Millwall a first-half lead against Justin Edinburgh's side with his 10th goal of the season, before Fred Onyedinma doubled the advantage in the 63rd minute.
The visitors had former Charlton defender Paul Konchesky sent off three minutes later after he picked up a second yellow card for a foul on Onyedinma, before Gillingham pulled a goal back through Bradley Dack in the 76th minute.
Millwall survived a late onslaught, before Dack was sent off for a second bookable offence in added time.
“I can’t ask any more of my players,” Harris said. “I was critical in the dressing room of my players for conceding the goal, and I think they were a little bit surprised with my reaction.
“But I said to them they’ve set their standards being so professional, so organised, the communication has been outstanding, aggressive – but we can’t give Bradley Dack, with his quality, that sort of space.
“Having said that, I quickly backtracked and I’ll do the same now. When you play against Gillingham in a local derby, in a feisty game, which it always is, it’s just about getting the three points. To get nine out of nine in the last 10 days is a fantastic effort from my players.
“I picked the same team three games in a row and they’ve gone out and they’ve produced.
“That was nowhere near the same quality as the first two wins we had, but it was every bit as satisfying a performance because I thought Gilingham played well tonight against us.”
The win lifted Millwall up to seventh in the League One table, after they had been just outside the relegation zone following a winless run of six games in September and October.
Key players such as Gregory, Steve Morison and Shaun Hutchinson have returned from injury to boost Millwall’s climb up the table.
Gregory and Morison have scored five goals in the last three games, and Harris paid tribute to his strike duo after Friday night’s win.
“What a great combination, what a great pairing,” he said. “The teams at the top have combinations: Bolton have a front four, Scunthorpe have a variety of strikers and wide players, Sheffield United the same.
“When we’ve got our best players out there we can beat anybody. They both led the line really well and what I will say is our worst 15 minutes of the game just before half-time coincided with our front pair not playing so well or keeping the ball for us.
“They were aware of that and I thought in the second half they put it right.
“I was very, very pleased with the points.”