The whole of Millwall Football Club got a massive lift on Good Friday when we won our derby match against neighbours Charlton Athletic 2-1 to record our first home win since the end of October.
With Rotherham losing at Birmingham City it meant we reduced our deficit to just four points. But come Bank Holiday Monday the gap was back to seven after Rotherham beat Brighton when we had the day off because of Blackburn’s continued involvement in the FA Cup.
We have a great record against Charlton, recording more than three times as many wins than they have in this fixture but in this match, after falling behind, things looked dire for us.
We had the best of the early exchanges played in front of a crowd of over 14,500. And when Addicks skipper Chris Solly was sent off for a deliberate hand ball on 28 minutes we were ready for a comfortable win.
But striker Lee Gregory missed the following penalty.
Charlton battled away with 10 men and our play was laboured. Matters took a turn for the worse when a cheeky back flick from Alou Diarra put the Addicks one up on 67 minutes.
Thankfully temporary manager Neil Harris has instilled a never-say-die attitude since he was installed. We managed to draw level with a smart finish by Magaye Gueye before Jos Hooiveld netted the winner on 87 minutes sending the home support mad.
Harris’ substitutions were the key to winning this match. Magaye Gueye looked dangerous especially when he switched over to the left wing.
I prefer to see him on this wing as on the right he always cuts back onto his left foot and lets defenders get back in position. Stefan Maierhofer won some good headers when he got on the pitch and Nicky Bailey put in some monster tackles when he was introduced.
Such is Bailey’s influence, if he had been fit enough to play 30 or so matches this season we would comfortably be outside of the relegation zone. He was even involved in putting the ball back in the box for the Hooiveld goal.
We now need to up our game to an even higher level to beat Watford at home this Saturday. They are in great form have a dangerous striker in Troy Deeney but we need to win every match now.