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Kick off 13:00 (UK)

22 January 2019 Venue Millwall FC Training Ground Attendance

Kick off 13:00 (UK)

Millwall U23
1 - 2
Crystal Palace U23

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Match Reports

U23s Report: Millwall 1-2 Crystal Palace

22 January 2019

Crystal Palace Under-23s came from behind to defeat south London rivals Millwall today, extending their lead on Kevin Nugent's side to four points by netting twice against 10 men in the hard-fought local derby's second-half.

The game opened immediately to the detriment of Palace, who conceded within two minutes as Lewis White hustled his way through a wall of legs in the Eagles' box before striking hard into the visitor's net.

Palace responded well, however, and were immediately dominant following the goal. Their control yielded no chances of note, though, and it was Millwall who came closest next.

Jiri Skalak - a Lions first-team winger - shaped-up to take a free-kick from a very shallow angle, but he still managed to test Dion-Curtis Henry who had to stretch a strong palm upwards to tip over the stinging effort.

Reacting to being close to two goals down, Kian Flanagan launched an equally ferocious effort at goal, however his shot from the edge of the box sailed just inches over David Martin's cross-bar.

Palace then enjoyed a spell of dominance from this point and created a spate of half-chances within the game's opening 45 minutes. 

Maintaining the momentum catalysed by Flanagan's attempt, Ollie O'Dwyer picked up the ball from fellow centre-back Sam Woods on the edge of Millwall's box, but his effort wasn't quite enough to beat the falling Martin as he held the ball comfortably.

Next up, it was Flanagan again looking to open Palace's account but his volley was hit straight at Martin before flying out for a corner.

Having recollected themselves, the home side's looked to keep Palace at bay as White broke down the left-wing to cross for Skalak, who could only head into the arms of Henry.

Seconds before half-time and the match exhibited its first real moment of tension when another first-team Lion - Sid Nelson - brought down Malachi Boateng with a crunching challenge for which he received a caution from the referee.

The second-half continued to highlight the latent venom underlying the game and it boiled over when Millwall captain Harry Donovan flew in on Tyrick Mitchell and was reprimanded with a straight red card.

From this moment, Palace were given the advantage and seemed keen to make the most of it as they upped the ante and increased their pressure on the 10-man hosts.

The Eagles' equaliser swiftly followed when Levi Lumeka wriggled his way along the left-wing to cut inside and square a lofted ball across the face of goal that invited a receptive Brandon Pierrick to slam home.

Lumeka was then involved further just minutes later when, from inside the box, he latched onto the ball and sent it flying against Martin's post, the former Liverpool 'keeper well beaten. Pierrick then looked to double his tally when he jinked his way into the box but ended up striking too softly to send the net rippling, and Martin caught the ball with relief.

The winning goal came, however, when Lumeka rotated on the ball in Millwall's box before striking with his swinging boot to take all three points for Palace with the ball nestling low in the Lions' net.

Palace: Henry, Tavares, Mitchell, M.Boateng, O'Dwyer, Woods, Pierrick, Flanagan, Street (Aveiro 85), McGregor, Lumeka.

Subs not used: Webber, D.Boateng, Brown, Addy.

Millwall: Martin, Parker, Tiensia, Hanson, Nelson, Pearce (Mitchell 65), Skalak (Harvey 65), Donovan, Alexander, White, Saunders-Henry.

Subs not used: Skeffington, Sandford, Duncan.

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