A second-half equaliser from Aiden O’Brien cancels out Marvin Sordell’s opener in a 1-1 draw at The Den...
Coventry arrived at The Den looking to recreate the same sort of performance that saw them claim a comfortable win last season, and got off to a flyer when Sordell hit a fierce shot on the turn that duly flew in to the Millwall net.
But a second-half comeback was inspired by O'Brien, as the 22-year old netted his third goal of the 2016/17 season. Sordell had the chance to net the winner 20 minutes from time, as his glancing header trickled wide of the post and substitute Jodi Jones also hit a delicious free-kick that was destined for the top corner before an intervention from Lions stopper Jordan Archer.
Millwall started the game brightly and had good spells of possession in the opening ten minutes, with the Sky Blues marshalling the home side well. In a feisty start, the Sky Blues looked neat in midfield with Gael Bigirimana and Vladimir Gadzhev providing the link between midfield and attack.
The pattern of play continued and The Sky Blues got their just rewards after 23 minutes, Bigirimana, at home with the ball at his feet found Marvin Sordell, and the 25 year old who had received his fair share of stick from the home fans, spun his man and riffled a shot that nearly broke the net from 25 yards, silencing his critics, much to the delight of the vocal away support.
The home side tried to respond quickly and as the ball fell to Aiden O’Brien on the edge of the City box many may have feared the worst, but not Lewis Page, the West Ham loanee got back and made a brilliant last gasp interception to keep his side ahead.
Up the other end, Sordell, brimming with confidence, clearly enjoyed his goal and tried the audacious from just past the half way line nearly lobbing The Lions’ keeper Jordan Archer but it sailed just over.
Millwall came back into the game and went in search of an equaliser before half time. However with the reintroduction of Captain Sam Ricketts into the starting line up, The Sky Blues looked solid and were dealing well with everything Millwall had to throw at them.
Coventry came out after the break with confidence trying to control the game and extend their lead. An early Gadzhev corner nearly did just that, swung in from the left a flick on header from Sordell flew inches wide.
Both sides continued to hunt for goals and on the hour mark Coventry again came close. Sordell won the ball off a Millwall defender, he shifted it wide to a overlapping Kyel Reid, the winger returned the favour and cut the ball back across the six yard box to Sordell who’s shot deflected of a defender and spun agonisingly wide.
Just as Coventry were bossing the game, they were dealt a bitter blow. With 20 minutes to play a break away down the right from Millwall through Steve Morison, who managed to find a yard of space firing a low cross and the slightest of touches from O’Brien saw the ball nestle in the far corner, levelling up the scores.
In search of a winner, Coventry turned to fresh legs bringing on Jodi Jones to replace Ruben Lameiras and the pacey forward looked to make his mark on the game. Picking up the ball just inside the opposing half, ran towards goal and was pulled back winning a free-kick 30 yards out. The 18 year old stood over it, confidently he stepped up and hit a lovely dipping effort that would have found the top corner only for a great save from Lions’ keeper Jordan Archer.
With five minutes of additional time shown by the fourth official, The Sky Blues fought to the end but it wasn’t enough for either side to find the winner. It was a strong away performance from The Sky Blues as they were forced to settle for a point.
Yellow: Sterry, Martin, Butcher
Attendance: 8,755 (730)
Coventry City: Charles-Cook (GK), Ricketts (C), Willis, Turnbull, Page (Di. Kelly-Evans 63’), Sterry, Gadzhev, Bigirimana, Reid (Agyei78’), Lameiras (Jones 74’), Sordell.
Subs: Burge (GK), Harries, Stevenson, Wright.
Millwall: Archer (GK), Martin, Craig (C), Williams, Worrall, Thompson (Butcher 76’), Onyedinma (Ferguson 59’), Romeo, Webster, Morison, O'Brien (Philpot 88’)
Subs: King (GK), Nelson, Abdou, Wylde.