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Millwall vs Rochdale FA Cup 4th Round Match Preview

January 26, 2018

15:00, Saturday 27th January, The Den

 

After Millwall cruised to the 4th Round in the less-than-marketable game against Barnsley, the Lions were rewarded with another underwhelming home cup tie, this time against Rochdale.

 

Millwall have progressed well in recent years in the FA Cup, and although Neil Harris will still prioritise their place in the Championship over a cup run, Chopper will expect his second string side to progress against the Dale.

 

Keith Hill's side will be something of a banana skin for Millwall, as although Rochdale sit second from bottom in League One, they will be looking for a positive result to end their recent run of four consecutive defeats.

 

The form guide does not read well for Rochdale, as Millwall have won each of their last six FA Cup games hosted at The Den, and the Lions have lost just one of their six home games against the side from Greater Manchester.

 

 

 

LAST TIME OUT

 

 

 

Leeds United 3-4 MILLWALL:  Millwall were finally victorious on the road this season, but blimey did we make hard work of it.  After being 2-0 up at half-time against ten men, there was only one winner.  However, not even Mystic Meg could've seen Leeds score three, Millwall scoring a late equaliser and an even later winner.  Neil Harris and the fans will be delighted with the fightback and character shown, however the way the Lions leaked these goals will be a concern.

 

Gillingham 2-1 ROCHDALE: Due to the game against Southend being called off due to a waterlogged pitch, Rochdale's most recent game was away at Gillingham.  Although Rochdale took the lead in a tight game, Andy Cannon's goal in the 27th minute wasn't enough and the Gills were victorious with two goals either side of half time.

 

 

 

LINE-UP

 

 

 

Millwall (4-4-2): Martin; Romeo, Shackell, Cooper, Craig; Wallace, Thompson, Saville, Ferguson; Elliott, Onyedinma;

 

After impressing against Barnsley, Neil Harris' "FA Cup" side will more than likely make a return.  Aiden O'Brien is absent from the line-up, and he will be replaced by the returning Shane Ferguson.  Tom Elliott impressed after coming on as a sub at Elland Road, so will be pushing for a start up front.

 

 

Rochdale (3-4-1-2): Lillis; Ntlhe, McNulty, Daniels; Hart, Camps, Kitching, Cannon; Henderson; Andrews, Done;

 

Rochdale could give debuts to both Sam Hart and Alex Dobre in South London, and the Dale's danger man is team captain Ian Henderson, who many fans believe can play at a higher level.

 

 

 

KEY BATTLE: GEORGE SAVILLE (MILLWALL) VS. CALLUM CAMPS (ROCHDALE)

 

 

Rochdale's Callum Camps caused Millwall all sorts of problems last season, and found the back of the net against the Lions in both the home and away league fixtures.  Saville will be looking to rekindle some of the early season promise he showed the home fans.  He has by no means been playing poorly, but the earlier spark and excitement he showed has fizzled out slightly, and he will be eager to return to his high-tempo ways.

 

 

TALKING POINTS

 

Tom Elliott - too good to sub, but not a starter?

 

This is a big game for Tom Elliott.  He is in an awkward position that when he is expected to score and perform, he either gets injured or is ineffective on the pitch.  When very little expectation is on his shoulders, as with the Leeds game, he shows just what he can do and how dangerous he can be.  It may be against a struggling third tier team, but Elliott has a big point to prove.

 

Do we study Rochdale's poor form?

 

Rochdale's recent run has been nothing but disastrous, but the cup provides a welcome distraction to the Dale.  Although both sides will say they will concentrate more on their league form, they will have one eye on the cup and the financial rewards that progressing to the further rounds will bring.  This may not be as one sided as some fans expect.

 

 

 

PREDICTION: MILLWALL 3-0 ROCHDALE

 

 

Although a Rochdale win would be the more romantic result, the Lions play with a speed and tempo that lower league teams cannot match.  The gulf in quality is vast and even a second string Millwall team should comfortably get a result and progress to the next round.

 

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