Millwall maintained their Championship status for another season with a 2-1 win over Nigel Pearson’s Leicester, denting their chances of earning a play-off place. The victory extended Millwall’s unbeaten run to four games, with three of those being wins. Leicester had recorded back-to-back wins themselves before this game but Harry Kane and Andy Keogh popped up with the goals once again to ensure the Lions were mathmatically safe.
It was the visitors who came out of the blocks firing as Ben Marshall sent two inviting deliveries towards goal, however the Millwall back four dealt with them easily. Lee Peltier caused problems early on aswell with his cross but once again the Millwall defence, who had recorded three straight clean sheets before this game, cleared their lines well.
Despite early pressure from Leicester, it was Millwall who opened the scoring on 22 minutes. Paul Robinson flicked on a James Henry corner which fell to Kane, he took the ball down and smashed it past Kasper Schmeichel to bag his third goal in as many games. The home side had Maik Taylor to thank a few minutes later as Leicester almost found an equaliser. Marshall’s pass was helped on by Wes Morgan which David Nugent latched onto. The one time England international composed himself, but saw his shot smothered clear by Taylor in the Millwall goal.
Following that great chance, Millwall almost caught Leicester on the counter as Shane Lowry’s clearance fell to Kane who was through on goal. However, Sol Bamba’s perfectly-timed tackle was enough to force the ball out for a corner. The game was pretty much end-to-end, as both teams still had everything to play for. Nigel Pearson’s side had play-off ambitions, whereas Millwall required this victory to reach the 50 point barrier which would guarantee their safety.
In the second half Millwall went one step closer to Championship survival as referee Phil Gibbs awarded them a penalty. Keogh turned Bamba on the edge of the area and played the ball into Kane who was brought down in the box by Paul Koncheskey. After much deliberation, it was Keogh who placed the ball on the spot. The Irishman stepped up and produced a fine finish, chipping the ball past Schmeichel to bag his seventh goal for the club since joining in January.
Leicester were clearly going for it as they introduced Steve Howard, Danny Drinkwater and former Millwall man Lloyd Dyer to proceedings. Despite the attacking threat they had introduced, it was Millwall who almost scored a magnificent third goal. Josh Wright picked the ball up some 30-yards from goal and sent a thunderous volley towards goal, but Schmeichel tipped it over with guile.
The visitors did pull one back ten minutes from time, courtesy of substitute Drinkwater, who drilled the ball past Taylor following Nugent’s lay-off. A crunching tackle from Robinson denied Jermaine Beckford a chance to level things, as Millwall were throwing their bodies on the line to ensure victory. With five minutes of injury time added on, Millwall faced a nervy few moments; Leicester threw everything they could at the Millwall defence, however they just couldn’t break them down. Kenny Jackett’s men earned three valuable points to ensure that the Den would be hosting Championship football again for another season at least.