Millwall were left frustrated after a rugged Bradford City side ground out a draw at the Den.
Neil Harris’s side had won their last four games at home, so would have had high hopes against City whose stop-start season has yet to get going.
But the Lions were let down by their inability to keep the ball for long periods of time and over-reliance on early balls into Lee Gregory and Steve Morrison.
Bradford’s attackers meanwhile seemed allergic to hitting the net, with Reid, Hanson and a long range effort from Gary Liddle all missing the target in the first half. By the time Devante Cole was brought down in the box by captain Tony Craig, it looked like the Lions were in for a taming, but the referee was unmoved by Bradford’s appeals.
Millwall ’s chances were few and far between, with too many attempted passes going out of play. Lee Gregory and Steve Morrison toiled hard against Bradford’s defence, but they could have done with more support from Williams and Saville in central midfield.
Bradford’s main attacking outlet seemed to come from overloading the left hand side, with Kyel Reid, James Meredith and Devante Cole combining to make life difficult for 37-year-old Carlos Edwards. To Edwards’ credit, he harried Reid and later his replacement Mark Marshall into numerous mistakes, and even managed to turn back the clock with a mazy run of his own through the Bradford defence before flashing his shot over the bar.
The second half saw Millwall have a go. Pressing Bradford back and patiently waiting for their chance to come. And come it did on 53 minutes when Shaun Williams’ thundering 20-yard shot needed a stunning save from namesake Ben in the Bradford goal.
With their tails up, Millwall rallied and pushed more men forward in search of a winner – Bradford seemed increasingly content to leave with a point, forgoing numerous opportunities to hit Millwall on the break.
The main concern for Millwall however, would be the injury sustained by captain Tony Craig after blocking James Hanson’s second half shot. He was subbed off for Byron Webster and will hope to be available for the FA Cup tie with AFC Fylde on Saturday, November 7.
Coach Neil Harris told the BBC post-match: “It was two good sides in good form at the moment facing each other.
“I think there was a lot of cancelling each other out, two game plans that were quite similar and we just didn’t quite have the end product today.
“We didn’t have that zip about us but we’re making small steps all the time.”