Millwall manager Neil Harris on his FA Cup hopes, Jake Cooper’s handball goal and Lions’ set-piece quality


Millwall manager Neil Harris is hoping for a home draw in the FA Cup fifth round after their 3-2 win over Everton at a rip-roaring Den.

Murray Wallace netted an injury-time winner for the Lions.

All three of the home side’s goals came from deadball deliveries. 

“We asked them if they could stand up to balls in the box – and they couldn’t,” said Harris.

Jake Cooper’s equaliser to make it 2-2 was contentious. With the big defender admitting in a post-match interview that he had handled.

“At the time I thought Marco [Silva, Everton manager] was complaining that it was offside,” said Harris. “Someone said Jake was honest enough to say the ball hit his arm.

“I’ve not seen it again. If we got a little bit of fortune on that then we have had very little luck this season and conceded a lot of last-minute goals.

“If we had a moment of fortune then we’ll take that certainly.

“It’s big for the football club. I thought the fans did galvanise us at key times.

“We knew it would be difficult for us to hurt Everton with the ball with the players we have got missing – we had to be especially good at set-plays.

“I think Everton only had two shots on target and got two goals. I know we didn’t have bundles but we contained them really well and stayed in the game.

“The character my players showed to come from behind twice was really special.

“David Livermore, my assistant manager, said ‘do you want to change shape and shore it up a little bit?’ But no, I wanted to try to win the game. I knew it would be tough going back to Goodison to get a result and we’ve got a big schedule coming up.

“You don’t always expect the left-back to pop up with your goal but he does it a lot in training.”

Harris has previously talked about pulling West Ham United out of the draw as a dream scenario.

This time he said: “I’d like to play at home. I always want to play at The Den. It always gives us an opportunity to win.

“I really like my players to play in big games in front of our fans.

“It is not always easy to bring people into our club. When we were talking to Alex Pearce and Ben Marshall we were fighting others. But when the place gets going, there is no better place in English football. I’ve not made it up – they’ve now seen it in person.”

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