Millwall. The word just trips off the tongue doesn’t it? Like paying a visit to Ikea – nobody wants to go there but they’ve got what you need and it’s cheap so you do the hard yards through the store anyway. They try and tangle your mind up in a labyrinth of crap ornaments and chairs but eventually you make it through. Wolves eventually made it through the hell hole unscathed yesterday.
Millwall. What are they good for? From memory the only positive thing I’ve heard from them was that time one of their fans confronted a bunch of terrorists in a London pub, saying ‘F**k off, I’m Millwall.’ Touche, a handy time to harness that mentality in the correct manner. But for the most part the club reeks of unspent, pent-up fury. It’s the Millwall way they’ll tell you, compensating for their lack of significance as a club by being ‘ard, ‘orrible and as we found out yesterday, racist.
Now before anybody jumps on the ‘don’t tar us all with the same brush’ bandwagon or thinks I’m bitter about the fact we’ve not come away with all 3 points, I realise this happens in all corners of the game in the UK. I’ve heard of it happening in Molineux, probably one of the most diverse crowds you’ll come across in the country. The difference is for every ignorant, uneducated fool in the audience there is someone standing, waiting to put them in their place. It wouldn’t be tolerated elsewhere. The Millwall Way has always been about embracing the siege mentality though. Taking the abuse and using it as a weapon. Does that justify the chanting subjected to Romain Saiss, Willy Boly, Bright Enobakhare and Alfred N’Diaye? Well done, you can have your point. But don’t try and command any sort of respect as a football club. By all accounts you gave us one of our toughest games of the season. But that won’t be the story anymore. Well done, you played yourself. Ask yourself a question – what would Mahlon Romeo and Tom Elliott think of what goes on in the crowds? I’m sure there’s a much longer list of ethnic minority players who would be able to question the attitudes of many in the stands at The Den, but The Mighty Millwall must keep up their mob mentality in their search for 3 points.
As for Wolves, in my head I was a little concerned about this game, but only because I thought Nuno may make a few changes for what I see as the toughest game of our season so far, against Bristol City. Incidentally it was only Helder Costa’s introduction to the team that altered the line up and his two assists were evidence of his growing authority within the team this season. He’s all set to explode into form and it’s coming at a good time with Bonatini and Jota not quite the matchwinners they once were. A multiplicity of attack is key to any promotion campaign – evidenced by our previous successes. Not to compare but to illustrate the point, Blake, Sturridge, Miller and Ndah was a varied and potent attack, as was Ebanks-Blake, Iwelumo, Keogh and Vokes. Jota, Costa, Cavaleiro ans Bonatini should eclipse all.
We also had the pleasure of a Romain Saiss strike on target, let alone one that ended up as a goal. It looked as if we had much more fluency back in attack and much of it was down to our wing backs being more involves in the game. What cannot be excused is how vulnerable we were to the counter though – the Jed Wallace counter, no less. Our apparent vulnerability at set pieces was also in evidence, despite us hardly conceding a chance from set pieces in weeks.We’re on the march. Millwall temporarily clambered onto our backs in an attempt to halt our progress but we managed to shrug them off. They’ll revel in the fact they managed to take something away from us, but with results going our way it’s a point gained. The sour taste that goes along with tussles with Millwall may not leave immediately though. As a Punjabi Wolves fan, I feel absolutely privileged to have been brought up in a tolerant, diverse City supporting a welcoming football club. We’ve had our moments. Just recently I found out that the original words to ‘Everywhere We Go’ were littered with racial stereotypes and references that speak of a darker age. Thankfully we have come through that development period as a fanbase and the Indian dhol is a fixture on matchdays across the country. Maybe Millwall are just a little behind on that journey of tolerance, but they have a seriously long way to go. No ‘Family Club of the Year’ award can excuse what people experience on a matchday. ‘F**k off, I’m Millwall’ will no doubt be the response to this blog from many. But I say this – ‘Eff Off, We’re Wolves.’ And we’re Premier League in all but name.Gully