Millwall boss reveals goalscorer Williams had been injury doubt for Birmingham game – and gives verdict on 1-1 draw

BY ALEX GRACE

Gary Rowett admitted he was not “happy with a point” after Millwall drew 1-1 at Birmingham City.

Millwall took the lead through Shaun Williams’ cracking 25-yard strike but were pegged back by Jake Clarke-Salter, who headed in Daniel Crowley’s corner with 11 minutes left.
“I wouldn’t say I’m pleased with a point,” said Rowett. “The first-half performance was very, very good.
“We were by far the better side, created some very very good chances and had a lot of control of the game when we counter attacked, and we did it excellently.
“Birmingham play an expansive style and they’re trying to make a lot of passes but our shape was very good, and we were aggressive in terms of pressing the first ball.
“They weren’t able to play through us. We had a wonderful chance with Matt Smith, Jed [Wallace] plays a brilliant cross, whips in with a little bit of pace, and Matt – normally for him that’s like a tap in – but it’s a great safe from Cornall Trueman.
“I felt as though we went from strength to strength.”
Rowett revealed that Williams had been suffering in the lead up to the game.
“He pulled out of training with a hip injury yesterday.
“We had a few walking wounded. We were going to play five at the back, like we did at Swansea, but we only had four defenders, so that made my decision pretty easy. But we got through it. It’s another tough away game. Second half, did we run out of steam? Or did we lack a little bit of composure to get up the pitch? We gave the ball away and that means then there’s a real swing to the game.”
 
The Millwall boss pointed out that it had been a positive eight days for his side as they banked five points and remain unbeaten.
“It’s a positive and we had two tough away games.
“We’re respectful and realistic about the type of team we are, but also we’re just starting to show a real ambition. If we can piece it together – some of those 20-minute, 30-minute spells into a whole performance – then we’re a really good side.”
PICTURES BY BRIAN TONKS

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