MX23RW : Sunday, October 24 19:31:49| >> :600:111048:111048:
Aug 28, 2021 at 3pm UK at The Den
MillwallMillwall
2-1
BlackpoolBlackpool
Wallace (63'), Cooper (90')
Mitchell (50'), Saville (62'), Malone (69'), Kieftenbeld (74')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Lavery (56')
Dougall (28'), Yates (62'), Anderson (74')
Connolly (14')

Preview: Millwall vs. Blackpool - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship clash between Millwall and Blackpool, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

After both featuring in the EFL Cup second round in the week, Millwall and Blackpool return to Championship action on Saturday, when they square off at the Den.

Millwall progressed with a 3-1 win over Cambridge United, but Blackpool were dumped out by Sunderland, while both sides remain without a win after four games of the Championship season.


Match preview

Millwall manager Gary Rowett pictured in February 2021© Reuters

After another impressive showing last season, eventually finishing in 11th spot in the championship, Millwall headed into the new campaign with confidence, as Gary Rowett set his sights on a battle for the playoff spots.

They got off to an acceptable start, collecting two points from their first two league games as they drew 1-1 with Queens Park Rangers and Blackburn Rovers, while also defeating Portsmouth 2-1 in the first round of the EFL Cup.

The Lions were unable to sustain an unbeaten start though, as the third league game saw them fall to a 2-1 defeat in a London derby with Fulham, as Benik Afobe pulled a late goal back in vain after Fabio Carvalho and Aleksandar Mitrovic both got on the scoresheet for their opponents in the first 10 minutes.

They again fell short last time out, as an Aden Flint brace and a Sean Morrison goal fired Cardiff City to a 3-1 win last week, with Afobe again hitting what turned out to be a consolation goal.

However, Rowett's men come into Saturday's game with some renewed confidence after a Murray Wallace brace and a Matt Smith goal saw them knock Cambridge United out of the EFL Cup on Tuesday with a 3-1 win, and they will look to build on that with what would be their first Championship victory of the season.

Blackpool's manager Neil Critchley celebrates after the match against Oxford on May 21, 2021© Reuters

On the other hand, Blackpool come into the game on the back of a cup defeat, as they fell to a 3-2 home loss at the hands of third-tier Sunderland, with Aiden O'Brien completing a hat-trick in the 91st minute to see the visitors progress despite an early Shayne Lavery opener and an 87th-minute Josh Bowler equaliser.

While that did come after a commendable 2-2 away draw against promotion-chasing Bournemouth, with James Husband and Jerry Yates drawing them level in the second half after an early Dominic Solanke brace, the previous two league outings produced back-to-back defeats.

After an opening draw with Bristol City and a dominant cup win over Middlesbrough, Neil Critchley's men were first defeated 2-0 by Cardiff City, with Leandro Bacuna and Kieffer Moore getting on the scoresheet, before Viktor Gyokeres hit the only goal in a 1-0 win for Coventry City at Bloomfield Road in the last Championship game.

As a result, they now sit on just two points from their first four games back in the second tier after Kenneth Dougall fired them to victory in last season's League One playoff final, and they will be desperate to find a first win on Saturday to climb away from the foot of the table.

Millwall Championship form:
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • L

Millwall form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W

Blackpool Championship form:
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • D

Blackpool form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • L



Team News

Blackpool's Callum Connolly celebrates scoring against Middlesbrough in the EFL Cup on August 11, 2021© Reuters

Rowett made several changes to his squad for the recent cup clash with Cambridge, but he should revert back to a similar system to the one he has deployed in the Championship so far this season.

Target man Matt Smith proved his worth with a goal in that game, but the pairing of Benik Afobe and talisman Jed Wallace has impressed so far, and they should both return to the starting XI.

Elsewhere, Bartozs Bialkowski will take back his place between the sticks, while Maikel Kieftenbeld and George Saville should both return to the midfield.

Defender Murray Wallace offered an impressive attacking threat in that game, as he moved from centre-back to a wing-back role on the left-hand side, and Rowett could keep him in that spot after Wallace hit a brace.

Blackpool should come into Saturday's game with a clean bill of health, and Critchley rested several key players in the midweek cup game.

Midfielder Kenneth Dougall should come straight back into the middle alongside Grant Ward, while star forward Jerry Yates will return to the starting XI to lead the line.

However, forward Shayne Lavery scored in Yates's absence, and he could also keep his place in the attacking line if the Tangerines slightly alter their system.

Millwall possible starting lineup:
Bialkowski; Ballard, Pearce, Cooper; Romeo, Kieftenbeld, Saville, Evans, M Wallace; J Wallace, Afobe

Blackpool possible starting lineup:
Maxwell; Connolly, Husband, Ekpiteta, Garbutt; Bowler, Dougall, Ward, John-Jules; Lavery, Yates


SM words green background

We say: Millwall 1-0 Blackpool

While both sides have had disappointing starts to the season, the Lions are experienced at Championship level and difficult to beat at the Den, and we see them earning a first league win of the season on Saturday.

Rowett's men come in with a degree of momentum following an impressive cup win, while their visitors' confidence has taken a major hit, meaning they could fall just short in London, as plenty of sides do when Millwall take a lead on home turf.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data


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How you voted: Millwall vs Blackpool

Millwall
58.5%
Draw
14.6%
Blackpool
26.8%
41
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Bournemouth1410402481634
2Fulham1492333141929
3West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom1484225111428
4Coventry CityCoventry147342017324
5Luton TownLuton145632318521
6Middlesbrough146351713421
7Queens Park RangersQPR146352522321
8Huddersfield TownHuddersfield146351817121
9Stoke CityStoke146351716121
10Millwall145631515021
11Blackpool146351718-121
12Blackburn RoversBlackburn145542317620
13Reading146172024-419
14Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd145362021-118
15Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest145271820-217
16Swansea CitySwansea144551517-217
17Bristol City144461520-516
18Birmingham CityBirmingham144461217-516
19Preston North EndPreston143651418-415
20Peterborough UnitedPeterborough144281627-1114
21Cardiff CityCardiff143291226-1411
22Hull City14239920-119
23Barnsley14158920-118
24Derby CountyDerby143831011-15

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