Boro's Pulis disagrees with Harris but adds: 'He should be proud of his Millwall players'

TONY Pulis disagreed with Neil Harris on Middlesbrough’s penalty in Saturday’s 1-1 draw – but he heaped praise on the Lions boss and assistant Dave Livermore after the game.

Millwall looked like they would take three points from the Riverside as they led through Jed Wallace’s 22nd-minute goal, but in the 90th minute referee Keith Stroud judged substitute Steve Morison had pushed Daniel Ayala and Jordan Hugill scored the penalty.

On first viewing Harris didn’t think it was a spot-kick.

“I’m disappointed with the goal, yes of course,” he said. “I’ve only seen it from one angle and I don’t think it’s a penalty so it’ll be good to see it on TV later.

“But that’s where my frustration finishes because prior to that and even after that it was one of the best performances that we’ve produced this season. It was outstanding from start to finish.

“It was a game that we didn’t always boss with the ball, but on the counter-attack and shape-wise we certainly controlled it, and the game went exactly how we planned it to go.

“Where we fell a bit short was being let down by the official but we could have been out of sight.

“We should have scored again in the first half and obviously had two good chances just before the 90th minute with Mahlon [Romeo] and Jed where we have to hit the target.

Goal scorer Jed Wallace was a transfer target for Boro last January

“As a performance full of energy, character, ability with the ball and discipline, I don’t think you’ll see many better performances, certainly here at Middlesbrough this season.

“Tony’s about as honest as you’ll ever come across as manager and he said after the game at The Den that they deserved nothing and got a point.

"I’d like to think that we deserved the three points today with the performance but when you’re a team at the top fighting for promotion, and we’re a team that are scrapping which we are at the moment, that’s how the games go.

“It’s still a learning curve for us. Some of my leaders are still quite young. Some of them are mid-20s and they have to learn how to manage games without the reliability of senior players around them, and the young players certainly need to learn.

“We have to try and learn from this and see games out.”

Pulis – who tried to sign Wallace last August – thought Hugill was fouled in the opening period, and felt Stroud made the right call late on.

Pulis said: “We should have had one first half and the second one is a definite penalty. It’s another game we’ve not had a penalty given but the great thing about the last one is that the referee can see Morison push Daniel as he’s just about to jump.

“And you’ve got to give Jordan all the credit as well.

“The other thing I want to say is I thought Millwall were very resilient today. They’re a good group of players, they work very hard for their manager and the coach there, who’ve been two stalwart Millwall people.

“They know what they are and they really put a shift in. They were good and resilient and the manager should be proud of them.”

Image: Millwall FC

John Kelly