Bristol Rovers were reduced to 10 men just 16 minutes into the match on Saturday, November 12. Defender Daniel Leadbitter was sent off for fouling Aiden O’Brien on the edge of the box.
But the West Country side were still a threat. They passed the ball well, had players with pace in the team and passed the ball with confidence – as befitting a team fifth in the table before the start of the match.
Getting the second goal for the Lions was the key. We ran out comfortable 4-0 winners sharing the goals among four different players. O’Brien, Shaun Williams, Lee Gregory and league debutant Harry Smith.
Striker Lee Gregory led the line well and he may have to get used to that role, with Steve Morison out for six weeks with an injury sustained in the recent Southend United FA Cup match.
Gregory is a much improved player these days. But it was his strike-partner, 21-year-old Harry Smith who stole the plaudits.
The youngster followed up his brace in the Luton Check-a-trade Trophy win on Tuesday night (November 8), with a goal and very promising performance in the Bristol Rovers match on his full league debut.
Smith set up Gregory’s goal and showed that he is capable of holding the ball up and provide lots of flick-ons. The wingers will also enjoy having a focal point.
Gregory, Morison and manager Neil Harris, all former non-league strikers, will be able to impart their experience and the striker’s game can only get better from that daily contact in training.
Smith is just starting his league career but he has the potential of being a big favourite down in SE16 .
The former Folkestone Invicta frontman Harry Smith is loving his fairytale start to his time at Millwall.
He told the club’s website: “After Tuesday I didn’t think it could get any better than that, but to make my League debut at The Den and score a goal, it couldn’t get any better than that.
“It’s a bit surreal. I had to borrow a lot of the lads’ season tickets to get all my family here for the game.
“The last week has all been a bit of a blur, but it’s been fantastic and just great to play at The Den.”
FA Cup action
The FA Cup Second Round match at home to Braintree Town has been confirmed to be played on Sunday, December 4, with a 2pm kick-off so it can form part of the BBC’s panel of matches for the day.
Reduced match ticket prices with discounts for season ticket holders are always welcome for matches.
Smith’s emergence shows there are some very good players in non-league so we will have to be on our game to advance.
But our immediate aim is to get some revenge away at Bolton Wanderers on Saturday, November 19.
They inflicted our only defeat in the last eight matches when we lost 2-0 at home to a strong-looking team.
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