Match Report | Cardiff City 0-1 Millwall
Cardiff City suffered a narrow loss to Millwall at Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Tom Bradshaw’s first-half goal was enough for the Lions to record all three points.
Interim boss Dean Whitehead made eight changes to the side that fell to a defeat to Leeds United last time out, with a notable start for defender Mark McGuinness, following his return from a loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday.
In a competitive start, City looked dangerous on the counter-attack and forced a two-on-one situation, with Sheyi Ojo breaking forward, only for his pass towards Jaden Philogene to be blocked by Lions captain Shaun Hutchinson. The Bluebirds continued to pose a threat, with Philogene again involved, crossing into the area for Callum Robinson, whose header was tipped over the bar by goalkeeper George Long.
The visitors responded by creating a golden opportunity to take the lead, as winger George Honeyman drilled a low cross into the box, leading to Zian Flemming firing wide. With early chances falling for both sides, Robinson found space to deliver towards the back post, but striker Kion Etete couldn’t quite direct an effort goalwards.
As the Bluebirds searched for an opener, Ojo drove forward from midfield and found Philogene free on the right, who cut inside and had an effort blocked. Millwall took the lead in the 26th minute, as Bradshaw profited from a mistake in the City backline to finish past Ryan Allsop.
Having fallen behind, the Bluebirds immediately looked to equalise through Robinson, whose free-kick from the edge of the box was blocked by the wall, leading to Philogene firing just over with a powerful strike. City had a great chance to draw level as Robinson won the ball back and drove forward, before playing in Philogene, whose shot at goal was blocked.
Just before the break, the visitors had a chance to double their lead, as Honeyman broke on the right and crossed low for Bradshaw, who forced a save from Allsop. Despite City creating a series of first-half chances, the Lions went into the interval with a 1-0 lead.
The Bluebirds made a bright start to the second period, as an intricate interchange between Etete and Robinson resulted in the latter curling agonisingly wide from the edge of the box. In another positive attack, Philogene drove forward and crossed towards Ojo, who couldn’t quite direct the ball goalwards.
City continued to apply pressure on the visitors, with Etete cutting inside from the left and curling just over the woodwork. As another opportunity was created by the Bluebirds, Callum O’Dowda worked his way into space on the left, before crossing for Ojo, who headed over the bar.
As the visitors replied with a chance of their own, Honeyman broke into the box, only for his effort to be denied by a fine block from McGuinness. With City committing bodies forward, Bradshaw looked to be clear to double Millwall’s lead, only for Perry Ng to produce a fantastic last-ditch tackle.
The Lions went close once more, as Flemming broke free on the right and squared to substitute Jamie Shackleton, whose effort was brilliantly saved by Allsop. Despite City’s efforts to equalise, the visitors saw out the victory.
The Bluebirds return to league action in two weeks, travelling to Hull City on Saturday, 4 February, 3pm KO.
FINAL SCORE: CARDIFF CITY 0–1 MILLWALL
Cardiff City: Allsop, Ng, McGuinness, Kipré, O’Dowda, Wintle © (Ralls 69’), Rinomhota, Ojo (Davies 69), Philogene, Robinson, Etete. Subs not used: Alnwick, Sang, Nelson, Sawyers, R Colwill.
Millwall: Long, McNamara, Hutchinson ©, Cooper, Mitchell, Bradshaw (Shackleton 80’), Flemming, Styles (Malone 90’), Bennett (Leonard 63’), Saville (Cresswell 90’), Honeyman (Voglsammer 80’). Subs not used: Białkowski, Esse.