Millwall 1-0 Birmingham: Japhet Tanganga scores late winner to give Lions huge win

Millwall 1-0 Birmingham: Japhet Tanganga scores late winner to give Lions huge win

10 March 2024 0 By Total Football News
Millwall players celebrate scoring against Birmingham
Japhet Tanganga’s goal was his third since joining Millwall on loan from Premier League Tottenham Hotspur

Japhet Tanganga struck late to help Millwall to a crucial Championship victory over Birmingham City at The Den.

The defender headed home George Saville’s corner in the final minute.

Victory lifts the home side five points above the bottom three, extending Neil Harris’ unbeaten run since his return as manager to four games.

Birmingham sit 19th, three points above the relegation zone and are now winless in four.

The visitors had goalkeeper John Ruddy to thank for the first half staying level.

First, he denied George Honeyman with a save from close range, then he reacted well to deny Jake Cooper, whose powerful volley looked destined for the bottom corner.

As half-time approached, Birmingham showed signs of life when Jay Stansfield called Millwall goalkeeper Matija Sarkic into action from a tight angle.

Juninho Bacuna was then thwarted as he prepared to fire goalwards after Alex Pritchard set him away on the counter-attack. Stansfield also squandered a brilliant opportunity after the restart, dragging a shot wide just yards out.

Another chance went begging, this time from Koji Miyoshi, who couldn’t convert as the visitors searched for the opener.

Towards the end of the game, Millwall looked the more likely to win it as Saville failed to connect with Cooper’s flick on, but their wait was worth it when Tanganga nodded Saville’s corner past Ruddy.

Millwall boss Neil Harris:

“Japh’s got great pedigree, he’s got a great CV in terms of games at the top level and playing in Europe.

“Sometimes you have to be a different player here, and the reason I’m at the football club is to try and teach the players what a Millwall player looks like, whether that’s a goalkeeper or a centre-half or a centre-forward.

“All I said to Japh was just to make your decisions and I’ll support you, but you can be as aggressive as you like.

“Ultimately, he’s headed the ball a lot (in both boxes) and to be a good Millwall centre-half you have to do that.”

Birmingham City caretaker manager Mark Venus told BBC Radio WM:

“I think we created the better opportunities second half, I can’t remember their keeper making a save. We conceded from a corner, it is becoming a horrible situation.

“We moved the ball for the sake of moving the ball. There was no purpose, only in the second half did we create anything.

“We’ve got to hit a points target to stay up. It is another game ticked off; we have to get something from the two home games coming.

“It feels like we’ve had away game after away game and we’ve not been able to get anything from them apart from Hull. It has left us something we have to sort out.”

Line-ups

Millwall

Formation 4-4-2

  • 20Sarkic
  • 18LeonardBooked at 64mins
  • 6Tanganga
  • 5Cooper
  • 15BryanBooked at 87mins
  • 39Honeyman
  • 8Mitchell
  • 23Saville
  • 19WatmoreSubstituted forLongmanat 60′minutes
  • 21ObafemiSubstituted forHutchinsonat 90+2′minutes
  • 10FlemmingSubstituted forNorton-Cuffyat 90+2′minutes

Substitutes

  • 2McNamara
  • 3M Wallace
  • 4Hutchinson
  • 11Longman
  • 12Mayor
  • 17Norton-Cuffy
  • 24De Norre
  • 25Esse
  • 33Bialkowski

Birmingham

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 21Ruddy
  • 12Drameh
  • 44Aiwu
  • 4Roberts
  • 3BuchananBooked at 90mins
  • 34SunjicSubstituted forJamesat 83′minutes
  • 13Paik Seung-ho
  • 11MiyoshiSubstituted forHallat 73′minutes
  • 29PritchardSubstituted forJutkiewiczat 83′minutes
  • 7Bacuna
  • 28Stansfield

Substitutes

  • 1Etheridge
  • 2Laird
  • 8Roberts
  • 10Jutkiewicz
  • 16Dozzell
  • 17Dembélé
  • 19James
  • 20Gardner
  • 35Hall

Referee:
Darren Bond

Attendance:
17,008

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