PREVIEW: Birmingham City vs. Millwall

STEVE Morison believes Jack Grealish had the perfect response to his Birmingham assailant last Sunday.

Aston Villa’s Grealish was attacked by Blues fan Paul Mitchell – who on Monday was sentenced to 14 weeks in prison for the incident – but went on to score the winner in the second-city derby.

Birmingham welcomed that sentence and in a statement on Monday said they were increasing their security at St Andrew’s.

Morison has criticised fans for invading the pitch in matches he has been involved in, most notably the play-off final win over Bradford at Wembley in 2017.

Lions skipper Morison said usually players and fans know where the line is, before it was shockingly crossed at the weekend.

“Normally people say quite a lot to you behind the board but you don’t often get an altercation because that’s where it stops,” Morison said.

“It’s disappointing for the game, it’s happening more and more. I’ve been an advocate for a long time of people staying off the pitch because it doesn’t do anyone any favours. I’ve always had a massive frustration with it.

“It hinders everyone going forward. Clubs get sanctioned, things get stopped, things get changed.

“The incident with Jack Grealish went too far but the best bit of news was that he went and scored the winner. To answer your critics that’s the best way to do it.

“We’re on the pitch to do a job, be professional. We’ve seen what happens when players react, we get in a hell of a lot of trouble.”

Millwall will be hoping Birmingham’s players have been distracted by what happened at the weekend when the clubs play their last league game before the international break.

Despite the defeat, Garry Monk’s side are still just five points off the play-offs.

Millwall are one point above the bottom three and will go into the international break in the relegation zone if they fail to beat Blues and Rotherham win at QPR.

Lions boss Neil Harris has plenty of selection decisions ahead of the game. Shaun Hutchinson was left out for Alex Pearce in the 2-1 defeat to Bolton on Saturday but could be recalled.

Harris could also tinker with the Lions’ formation and play Jed Wallace off Lee Gregory as he did in the 1-0 win at Derby County last month.

Birmingham are without Maxime Colin for the fixture.

Possible Millwall team

4-4-1-1: Archer; Romeo, Pearce, Cooper, Meredith; Ferguson, Thompson, Williams, Marshall; J Wallace; Gregory.

Match odds

Birmingham 11/10 Draw 11/5 Millwall 5/2

This season’s meeting

Millwall 0-2 Birmingham (Leonard sent off 33; Meredith og 11, Morrison 76)

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly