Millwall boss Gary Rowett gives initial reaction as Lions blow chance to move five points off sixth

MILLWALL boss Gary Rowett said his side “deservedly lost the game” as they missed chances before a clinical Swansea scored three times to end their four-match losing streak.

The Lions had won their last three games but were always chasing the match after going a goal down to Andre Ayew’s strike in first-half added-time and former Millwall target Jamal Lowe added two more goals in the second half.

Jake Cooper and George Evans missed goal chances as Millwall passed up the opportunity to move to within five points of sixth in the Championship’s early kick-off.

Cooper also hit the post after the break.

“I’m disappointed, I thought there were moments in the game we needed to make go our way, they went the other way,” Rowett said.

“I thought we were quite bright at the start of both halves, certainly for the first 20, 25 minutes there was some really good play and good possession.

“We have a good chance early on with Coops from a set-piece where he heads wide, almost a free header.

“We get to half-time, they are always going to be a danger because they’ve got good players in forward areas.

“But to concede 20 seconds before half-time when we’ve worked so hard was very frustrating, considering Swansea are a very good side when they are 1-0 up and have something to protect.

“They can transition on you well and defensively they are very solid so I was not happy with that.

“I felt the way it came about was poor and changed the complexion of the game.

“I felt we started well second half, we hit the post to make it level, we don’t quite take that moment and then we make a mistake for the second goal.

“I don’t think we played well enough. I didn’t think we asked quite enough questions in the final third of Swansea.

“What I would also say is we have to defend better for all three goals. We deservedly lost the game.

“We conceded a very poor [opening] goal, now you’ve got to chase the game. When we chase the game we have to become a bit more open.

“We hit the post and don’t get the equaliser and we then have to chase the game and put more attackers on.

“We put more attackers on, you leave more space for the opposition. It becomes a game of balance, if we can find the next goal then it makes it interesting.

“Ken Zohore has a good shot, the keeper makes a fabulous save, that would make it 2-1. I think that would have made it interesting at the end of the game but we couldn’t find those moments today.

“But while I thought there were some good bits, there just wasn’t enough of that drive and desire that we’ve played with in recent weeks.”

Rowett was asked about the performances of youngsters Danny McNamara and Billy Mitchell.

He said: “I prefer to focus on the team as a whole because they are young players we have brought through, but like any young player that comes into the team they are going to show that bright spark and then every now and then there are going to be moments you’ve got to do better like a senior player.

“I’ve been pleased with those two overall. I didn’t think today was their greatest performance but I have no issue with that either.”

Image: Millwall FC 

John Kelly