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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
18:41 3rd January 2015
By  Luke Gallagher

Millwall 3 Bradford City 3

The Bantams produced an encouraging display against Championship opposition as they earned themselves a third round replay with a 3-3 draw at Londoners Millwall. 


Billy Knott fired City ahead early on but Scott McDonald headed the hosts level before the break. Ricardo Fuller put his side ahead but a quick fire double had Phil Parkinson's men ahead again, only for the former Stoke City frontman Fuller to score late on and earn his side a trip to West Yorkshire a week on Wednesday.


Parkinson made just two changes to the side that beat Notts County in the last fixture; Ben Williams came in for Jordan Pickford as expected with the latter made ineligible to feature in the competition by his parent club, Sunderland. Alan Sheehan also came into the starting eleven to replace Andrew Davies who limped off injured against Notts County and Filipe Morais passed a late fitness test to keep his place in the starting eleven.


City who did go into the game as the underdogs, made a fantastic start to the game, really getting in the faces of the hosts, who went into the game on a poor run of form with three successive league defeats prior to the cup tie.


Jon Stead had an early sighter in the opening minutes before Knott got himself on the score sheet for the second successive game. 


Alan Sheehan delivered a corner which was nodded down by James Hanson and Knott fired the ball home for the opener.


Millwall had the ball in the net not long after the opening goal through Fuller but the goal was chalked off for an offside decision; Ben Willliams had made a save to keep out imposing centre half Danny Shittu’s header out and the Jamaican pounced on the rebound but the linesman intervened and made a decision against the Jamaican.


Andy Halliday had a chance to double City’s lead with his team on top in the contest; Hanson again was integral to the move and his knock down was scooped over the bar by the Scotsman to let Ian Holloway’s side very much off the hook.


Millwall began to come back into the game, however, to become the more dominant of the two teams in the latter stages of the second half.


They found the equaliser through former Middlesbrough and Celtic man McDonald, who met a cross with a glancing header into the back of the net after he’d arrived late into the area to latch onto a cross.


Knott went close again before the half time whistle was sounded after Forde had failed to deal with Morais' cross but the 'keeper got up quickly to repel the midfielder's half-volley inside the area.


Ed Upson went close for the home side after the break but his header was of the mark and failed to test Williams after he’d latched onto Matthew Briggs’ decent delivery into the area.


The game was very much anyone’s at this stage with the scores level but after Morais had gone close again with a deflected shot towards goal, Holloway’s men took the lead for the first time in the game. 


McDonald got in behind the back line before squaring the ball for Ricardo Fuller to produce a simple finish past Williams.


Before long though, City were level and it was Sid Nelson who had unwantedly got himself on the score sheet with an own goal. The former youth team captain, who was making only his second appearance for the first team, saw the ball hit him before rolling over the line after Hanson's powerful shot come down off the crossbar following a deflection up off Alan Dunne.


Only a few minutes later, City had completed a turn around to get the upper hand in the game again through that man Knott.


Morais delivered a cross into the area and Knott met the ball with a well-controlled volley to ensure the ball made its way past David Forde and into the far corner.

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Helped by the introduction of former Everton winger Magaye Gueye, the hosts ensured there was one final sting in the tail with only seven minutes of normal time remaining.


Gueye produced a strong run to get the ball to Martin and he crossed low for Fuller to finish and score his second goal of the match to get his side back level again.

 

Williams had to be alert to make a save to keep out Gueye’s goal bound volley and both sides came half close to winning the tie during the five minutes of additional time at the end of the game. 


Morais had another decent attempt on goal which went narrowly over the bar and Millwall substitute Martyn Woolford tried a speculative volley from range that went wide of the target.


Although Hanson went close in the dying seconds, that was just about that and now the tie will be settled in West Yorkshire as Millwall will come to Valley Parade for the replay. 


The draw ensured at least that City will be in the fourth round draw for the first time since 2000.