Sky Bet Championship
St.Mary's - 3.00pm

Southampton 1

  • Adams 34'

Millwall 2

  • Tanganga 5'
  • Flemming 44' (pen)

Embed from Getty Images

Ché Adams heading the equaliser before Millwall converted a penalty later

Match Report

IBO Reporter: channonite

|Well, where do I start with this? Millwall took their chances but were allowed to foul and bully their way to a win by an utterly useless referee. A friend with us at the match is a referee to a decent non-league level, and he was incandescent, saying it was the single worst performance by a referee that he has ever seen, and he sees a lot; he is a member of the 92 Club, going to a match somewhere in England and occasionally Wales roughly twice a week.

After the Hull home game four days ago, I was hoping for a return to winning ways. No chance.

As for the team, after Manning's performance on Tuesday, he was dropped, and Jack Stephens was drafted in. Nominally, Harwood-Bellis was right back, Stephens and Bednarek were in the centre, and Walker-Peters was at left-back. In the continuing absence of Downes, the midfield was Aribo, Smallbone and Stuart Armstrong, with a forward line of Brooks, Adams and Fraser.

In the early play, it was clear that Millwall would be robust(!!), but Stu and Fraser down the left looked effective. In one move, Armstrong weaved between two defenders to get to the byline and cut back, but Brooks rushing in to meet the cross couldn't control the ball enough, but neither could the goalie, and he only managed to punch the bouncing ball behind for a corner which came to nothing.

The goalie took a long kick forward, which fell to Joe Aribo, but Smallbone and their No. 10 were tussling behind him, and the ref blew for a free kick to the away side. Saville took the kick just in front of us, coming down in a crowd of players in the area. Bazunu had come for the ball, but the big No. 6, Tanganga, got there first, and his looping header just dropped under the crossbar for a goal. 0-1 and only five minutes gone. This is turning into a habit.

Saints quickly had a chance to even things up when a free kick was awarded just outside the Millwall area on the left. The initial attempt was cleared, but Smallbone picked the ball up and crossed to the waiting Adams, who sent a perfectly weighted header beyond the keeper, but Tanganga came rushing in and headed it off the line. Close.

Millwall had clearly marked Fraser out for special attention and was pretty seriously clattered twice in rapid succession. Both were pretty appalling fouls, but the referee, Thomas Bramall (remember that name!), not only didn't book anyone, but he didn't even talk to the offender on either occasion. Both times, Fraser needed attention from the trainers, and after the second time, he was taken off to be replaced by Edozie.

Saints stepped up the pressure and, after one sustained period of playing the ball around the defenders in ever-increasingly intricate patterns, that man Stuart Armstrong sent an inch-perfect cross to the head of Adams, who made no mistake with his header from no more than five yards to equalise. 1-1, and the stadium was happier again.

The referee was doing his best to ruin the game, making some pretty strange decisions, and this seemed to unsettle Saints, particularly as the Millwall players realised they could get away with almost anything.

Rather than using the equaliser as a springboard to control the game, Saints were getting increasingly ragged, and we were praying that they could get to halftime without conceding another goal.

Then, just a couple of minutes before the break, Obafemi (yes, the ex-Saint) picked up the ball and shot at goal. It hit Jack Stephens's arm on the way, and the referee immediately pointed at the spot. Penalty. Flemming stepped up and calmly sent Baz the other way, sliding a perfect penalty to the bottom left corner. 1-2.

So, at the break, Millwall only had two shots on target the entire half and scored with both. The Saints fans were not amused.

At the start of the second half, Saints had another excellent chance when Brooks and Stephens played a neat one-two, and the Bournemouth loanee sent a great pass to Adams, but a defender got in the way, and the ball went behind.

Millwall were very disciplined in defending, and it seemed there were twice as many blue shirts as red as Saints tried to find a way through. At one point, Rothwell, who had recently come on for Joe Aribo, found himself in space just outside the area but could only shoot tamely straight at the keeper, who gratefully fell onto the ball.

Then, after some great work by Walker-Peters down the right wing, he got to the byline and crossed to Adam Armstrong (Replacing Adams), who couldn't keep his header down, and it sailed just over the bar.

Despite Millwall's time-wasting and constant niggly, sly fouling that the referee just seemed to ignore, Saints were creating chance after chance. Another one came along after good work by Sulemana ( Replacing Brooks) and saw Adam Armstrong send a great header towards the far corner, only to see the keeper flying across the goal to push the ball behind for a corner.

Eventually, time ran out, and the Millwall fans were ecstatic. Needless to say, we were gutted; a week in which we had two games that we were hoping for six points ended with none.

Man of the Match

Not that there was much to pick from, but Ché Adams scored and had two other decent chances, but his influence on the game reduced as the game wore on. Stuart Armstrong didn't seem to do much, but what he did was very good, including his perfectly weighted pass from which Adams scored. I was, however, very impressed with David Brooks on his first start after his return from injury. He is just so influential in everything that we do going forward. I am not convinced Martin knows how to deploy him to the best effect, but he was my man of the match.



  • 31 Bazunu
  • 21 Harwood-Bellis - Booked 90'
  • 5 Stephens - Booked 43' (Manning 71')
  • 35 Bednarek
  • 2 Walker-Peters - Booked 90'
  • 7 Aribo (Rothwell 60')
  • 16 Smallbone
  • 17 S Armstrong
  • 36 Brooks (Sulemana 71')
  • 10 Adams (A Armstrong 59')
  • 26 Fraser (Edozie 19' - Booked 84')


  • 3 Manning
  • 9 A Armstrong
  • 13 Lumley
  • 14 Bree
  • 18 Mara
  • 19 Rothwell
  • 20 Sulemana
  • 23 Edozie
  • 24 Charles


  • 20 Sarkic - Booked 90'
  • 18 Leonard
  • 6 Tanganga - Booked 13'
  • 5 Cooper
  • 2 McNamara
  • 39 Honeyman - Booked 8'
  • 8 Mitchell
  • 23 Saville
  • 11 Longman (Norton-Cuffy 62')
  • 10 Flemming (De Norre 86')
  • 21 Obafemi (Bradshaw 45')


  • 3 M Wallace
  • 9 Bradshaw
  • 17 Norton-Cuffy
  • 19 Watmore
  • 22 Emakhu
  • 24 De Norre
  • 25 Esse
  • 33 Bialkowski
  • 45 Harding

Match Stats

  • Southampton/Millwall
  • Possession: 81%/19%
  • Shots: 14/8
  • Shots on Target: 7/3
  • Corners: 13/1
  • Fouls: 9/8


  • Referee: Thomas Bramall
  • Assistants: Matthew Wilkes and Akil Howson
  • Fourth Official: John Busby
  • Attendance: 30,629


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