REPORT: MILLWALL 0 ALBION 0
- Albion play out 0-0 draw with Millwall
- First goalless draw between the two sides in 25 years
- Joe Bennett strikes bar with free-kick
- Albion now eight points clear of drop zone
Brighton & Hove Albion and Millwall could not be separated at The Den as the two sides played out a battling goalless draw.
Albion shaded affairs but were unable to get the better of a dogged Millwall, led out by interim manager Neil Harris in his first home game in charge.
It has been a tumultuous couple of weeks at the South London club, during which Ian Holloway was sacked as manager, with Harris given the arduous task of galvanising a Millwall team that sit second from bottom in the Championship.
A high-pressing game from the hosts saw Chris Hughton’s men encamped in their own half during the early exchanges of the game. Notable efforts on goal from the home side shortly followed, all of which proved fruitless
Having made a slow start to the game, it was only a matter of time before Albion carved out a chance of their own; Craig Mackail-Smith passed up a glorious chance to put the away side in the ascendency when he failed to lay it on a proverbial plate to a team-mate having sprinted past an onrushing David Forde.
But Mackail-Smith was rewarded for his endeavours when he was fouled near the corner flag - prompting the referee to award a free-kick. Danny Holla stepped up to take the set-piece which did very little to trouble Forde.
With the Albion faithful urging their team to pour forward, Mackail-Smith was at the heart of things again when he teed up Leon Best, who unleashed a tantalising strike which was parried away by Forde.
After the interval, the Seagulls were forced to make a change due to Beram Kayal sustaining an injury in the first-half as Kazenga LuaLua was summoned from the bench.
Despite Kayal’s departure, the visitors’ momentum did not waver. Best was fouled by Jimmy Abdou 20 yards from goal and a well-executed free-kick from Joe Bennett agonisingly rattled the bar.
Following his weaving run down the right flank Bruno floated in an inswinging cross which found Best at the far post only for the striker’s towering header back across goal to sail wide of the far post.
In hope of carving out a winner, Hughton tactically rejigged the side once more when Best and Mackail-Smith departed for Chris O’Grady and Joao Teixeira respectively.
As the clock ticked down, the travelling Albion supporters continued to raise the decibels in a bid to drive their team on to a winning goal, but the points were shared.