More home woe for Millwall as Reading keep pressure on top two
17:26 03 March 2012
Championship: Millwall 1 Reading 2
Millwall’s miserable home form continued as they were beaten by third-placed Reading, who kept the pressure on top-two Southampton and West Ham ahead of their games, this evening and tomorrow respectively.
Andy Keogh put the Lions up inside the first 15 minutes with a well-timed finish under Adam Federici.
However, Hal Robson-Kanu levelled for Reading with a bullet of a shot inside first-half stoppage time to change the feeling of the game at the break.
The Royals then dominated most of the second half and Adam Le Fondre tapped into an empty net with 15 minutes to go to give the visitors the lead as the Millwall defence were caught napping, leaving the home side without a league win at The Den since Boxing Day.
Reading started the game brightly and while their build-up play was good they were unable to test out David Forde in the Millwall goal.
Lions midfielder James Henry, playing against his former club, had two shots from distance inside the opening seven minutes but neither effort tested Federici in the Reading goal.
It wasn’t long, however, until the Lions took the lead. Spurs loanee Harry Kane produced a defence splitting ball for Keogh to run onto and he made no mistake for his first goal at The Den since joining from Wolves on transfer deadline day.
It could have been two soon after when Hamer Bouazza burst through the Royals’ defence and his shot caused Federici to spill but Kane was unable to make the loose ball count.
Reading, who had struggled to have any chances of note for most of the first-half, had a chance to level when Paul Robinson brought down Noel Hunt but Ian Harte’s free-kick went just over the bar five minutes before half-time.
The visitors levelled inside first-half stoppage time. The home side tried to run the clock down but from Harte’s corner Robson-Kanu fired an unstoppable shot past Forde to level.
Henry was causing the visitors problems throughout the opening 20 minutes of the second-half and floated in a delightful free-kick, which Kane just couldn’t get his head on.
The Millwall defence had to be at its resilient best to block Robson-Kanu and Adam Le Fondre’s shots with just over 20 minutes remaining.
However, sloppiness allowed Reading to take the lead. Le Fondre was in an offside position as the ball was played through but Tony Craig allowed Jason Roberts clean through and with Forde committed, he squared the ball for the former Rotherham man to tap home.
The visitors sat back after their goal and allowed the Lions to apply some pressure on the promotion chasers.
Tony Craig forced a save from Federici as the match entered stoppage time but that was as close as they would come, meaning Millwall have only picked one point from 18 since Boxing Day at home.
Millwall: Forde, Dunne, Robinson, Lowry, Craig, Henry (Mason 83), Abdou, Wright, Bouazza (Feeney 72), Keogh, Kane (N’Guessan 79).
Subs (Not Used): Allsop, Ward.
Reading: Federici, Connolly (Tabb h-t), Pearce, Gorkss, Harte, McAnuff, Leigertwood, Karacan, Robson-Kanu, Hunt (Le Fondre 64), Roberts.
Subs (Not Used): Andersen, Church, Cywka.
Referee: Christopher Sarginson (Staffordshire)