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Millwall manager admits frustration after yet another blank
LIONS boss Kenny Jackett was left frustrated as his team’s ongoing goal shortage cost them victory against Blackburn Rovers on Sunday.
Millwall could have booked an FA Cup semi-final place for the first time since 2004 and a date with Wigan in the last four, but they failed to find the net again despite having the best of an often feisty 0-0 draw with Rovers at the Den.
They now travel to Ewood Park to try and book a Wembley spot in Wednesday evening’s replay.
Jackett said: “I have some frustration because there was a win there for us and goal scoring has been a problem for us through 2013.
“We had an outstanding 2012 and today showed when we do get on top of sides and put pressure on them, we need to create chances and we need to score.
“Goal scoring is such an obvious one and such an important part of the game, it’s a key, it’s expensive and it’s something inside and outside the club we need to improve.”
The boss was at least pleased with the passion shown by his players against Rovers amidst a fine Den atmosphere.
But Jackett admitted he may look to the loan market to find a forward after losing Benik Afobe to injury and with Rob Hulse, Andy Keogh and Danny N’Guessan struggling for goals.
“I’m sure in the run up to the 28th of this month, which is the deadline, we will be looking to strengthen,” the manager added.
Jack Smith returned to the team in central midfield and still feels the club have a “massive opportunity” to get to Wembley.
He said: “There’s a great incentive to get to there and play in front of 60, 70, 80,000 whatever it maybe.”
The versatile Smith, who more regularly plays in the backline but found himself moved forward to the middle of the park, feels the Lions have nothing to fear from Wednesday’s Ewood Park replay.
He said: “I thought we did enough to win it, so you get the feeling of a missed opportunity.
“But we were the better team, so hopefully we’ll go on Wednesday and just carry that on.
“When we played Blackburn away in the league, we beat them 2-0 and we were the better team that day as well, so we go into it with a bit of confidence.
“They haven’t scored against us yet in the two games, so we go into it knowing we are going to create chances and hopefully we can put a couple away this time.”
The replay could have an edge to it after Rovers manager Michael Appleton claimed there were some “cheap shots” coming from Millwall players.
Smith added: “I wasn’t aware of anything going on.
“If you sort of breathed on them they’d fall over, so it was frustrating.”
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