Match Details: 03/08/2013
Millwall 0-1 Yeovil Town
Football League Championship
Yeovil Goals: Ed Upson (88)
Yeovil Line-Up: 1. Marek Stech, 2. Luke Ayling, 4. Joe Edwards, 5. Byron Webster, 6. Dan Seaborne, 7. Kevin Dawson, 8. Ed Upson, 9. James Hayter, 10. Sam Foley, 17. Paddy Madden, 18. Alan Tate,
Subs: 11. Michael Ngoo, 12. Gareth Stewart, 13. Kieffer Moore, 14. Sam Hoskins, 20. Billy Clifford, 21. Liam Davis, 23. Joel Grant
Substitutes Used: Michael Ngoo for Paddy Madden (46 mins), Sam Hoskins for Sam Foley (80 mins), Liam Davis for James Hayter (90 mins)
Bookings: Dan Seaborne (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 14), Paddy Madden (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 19)
Yeovil Town's first ever Championship football fixture went precisely to plan yesterday afternoon, as a single goal downed Millwall at the New Den. Midfielder Ed Upson, who took the club to Wembley Stadium in last season's play-offs, continued with his knack of scoring vital goals as he took advantage of a half clearance in the 88th minute, firing low into the bottom left hand corner from the edge of the box to give Yeovil all three points. That turned out to be the only division between the two sides, in a tight game where both sides struggled to truly test the goalkeepers.
The team that took to the field was very much a continuation of last season's line-up, with nine of the starters having also been in the eleven who were named on the teamsheet at Wembley Stadium. The only absentees were Dan Burn, who has returned to Fulham, and decided to head out on loan to Birmingham City, and Jamie McAllister, whose knee injury has kept him entirely out of pre-season. In their place were former Southampton defender Dan Seaborne, and Swansea City player Alan Tate who took the left-back slot - the same line-up that had taken to the field in the club's final two major friendlies. On the bench was where things had changed radically, with all six of the outfield players being summer signings.
During the opening 20 minutes of the match, Millwall largely controlled matters, even if they were wasteful in front of goal. Most of the home side's pressure came from crosses into the box, with Steve Morison planting a penalty spot header well wide of the target, whilst Andy Keogh's glancing attempt was just as wasteful, allowing Marek Stech to just watch it go wide.
It took a while for Yeovil to get going, and only after they'd been on the receiving end of the odd physical tackle - notably Steve Morison's clattering of Dan Seaborne close to the touchline, which somehow referee Dean Whitestone saw as worthy of a booking for both players, even though he acknowledged that Morison was the one who had committed the offence. Paddy Madden was then booked for trying to block a free kick from David Forde, and there was a little bit of concern that the match official was going to take over proceedings, particularly when his over-fussy refereeing at a free kick saw Yeovil land the ball in the net, but with him having already blown up for a bit of argy-bargy in the box before it was taken. The second ball into the box though was just as good, as Ed Upson's free kick was met by the head of Dan Seaborne, but with Forde getting down low to his right to stop the chance.
As the half went on, Yeovil gradually began to grow in confidence after their slightly tentative start. Luke Ayling made a strong run up the right flank, cutting past his marker, but found his shot dragged just wide of the near post. At the other end though, Marek Stech had to be very alert to the danger provoked by a neat flick over the top that put in James Henry, with the keeper brilliantly anticipating that and blocking at the winger's feet before he could truly gain control of the ball. Andy Keogh then hooked wide - overall that was Millwall's problem in that whilst they'd had the better chances, only Henry had actually managed to get the ball on target to worry Stech.
The second period opened with a surprise substitution, as Paddy Madden was replaced by Michael Ngoo, whose gangly figure instantly upset the Millwall back line, either inducing them to give away fouls, or being guilty of bundling over a few players himself - whenever he got near the ball, something unpredictable was going to happen. There were also penalty appeals waved away when James Hayter and Mark Beevers went down together in the box, with probably referee Whitestone's main doubt being who started the pushing contest first.
Again, the game of few chances continued to see half attempts go wide of the target - Millwall missed one of the best as a Marek Stech clearance fell straight to James Henry, with the keeper out of position, but the winger's first time attempt to lob the ball into an empty net from 25 yards out went wide of the target for a bit of a let-off.
At the other end, Kevin Dawson cut in from the right flank but shot wide, as Yeovil finished as the stronger side. But with two minutes remaining though, Ed Upson managed to strike the killer blow to settle the match. A ball into the box was poorly cleared by the Millwall defence, and fell invitingly to Ed Upson on the edge of the area. As he chested it down, it was inevitable as to what he would be trying to do, and whilst the midfielder didn't hit it cleanly, it landed in the corner of the net, with keeper David Forde caught flat-footed. And with a goal being scored that late in the day, there was no chance for the Lions to find their way back into the game, as the Glovers claimed three valuable points, and a wonderful start to their new life at Championship level.
Final Score: Millwall 0 Yeovil Town 1.
Scorers: Ed Upson (88 mins, 0-1)
1. David Forde
2. Alan Dunne 12. Shane Lowry 4. Josh Wright 3. Danny Shittu
16. Mark Beevers 14. James Henry 26. Nadjim Abdou 20. Andy Keogh
9. Steve Morison 18. Richard Chaplow
5. Paul Robinson 7. Liam Feeney (82 mins for Richard Chaplow) 8. Jermaine Easter 10. Nicky Bailey (49 mins for Josh Wright) 27. Scott McDonald (69 mins for Andy Keogh) 28. Scott Malone 43. Stephen Bywater
Yeovil Town (4-4-2):
1. Marek Stech
2. Luke Ayling, 5. Byron Webster (Capt), 6. Danny Seaborne, 18. Alan Tate
7. Kevin Dawson, 8. Ed Upson, 4. Joe Edwards, 10. Sam Foley
9. James Hayter, 17. Paddy Madden
11. Michael Ngoo (46 mins for Paddy Madden) 12. Gareth Stewart 13. Kieffer Moore 14. Sam Hoskins (80 mins for Sam Foley) 20. Billy Clifford 21. Liam Davis (90 mins for James Hayter) 23. Joel Grant
Millwall Bookings: Steve Morison (14 mins, foul)
Yeovil Bookings: Dan Seaborne (14 mins, retaliation), Paddy Madden (19 mins, encroachment)
Millwall Match Statistics: Possession: 47%; Shots: 11; Shots On Target: 5; Corners: 3; Fouls: 7.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 53%; Shots: 4; Shots On Target: 1; Corners: 4; Fouls: 9.
Referee: Dean Whitestone (Northamptonshire). Assistants: Daniel Cook (Hampshire) and Adam Nunn (Wiltshire). Fourth Official: Adrian Gillett (Buckinghamshire).
Attendance: 12,404 (including 891 Yeovil Town supporters).