Millwall manager takes fifth amendment on Forest referee display

News Shopper: Lions boss Steve Lomas. PICTURE BY EDMUND BOYDEN. Lions boss Steve Lomas. PICTURE BY EDMUND BOYDEN.

STEVE Lomas refused to comment on the performance of referee Dean Whitestone following Millwall’s 2-2 draw with Nottingham Forest at The Den.

The official appeared to deny the Lions two blatant penalties, one in each half and both for fouls on Lee Martin.

Whitestone was also criticised throughout the game by Lions fans who were aggrieved with the grappling tactics used against Steve Morison by Forest every time the ball was played forward. And the Den boss was not forthcoming with his assessment of the man in black.

“I don’t want to talk about the referee to be honest and we’ll just leave it at that,” he said.

“Anything else but I don’t want to talk about him.”

Morison, making his first start since August, gave Millwall an early lead, which was cancelled out eight minutes before the break by Andy Reid.

Martyn Woolford put the hosts back ahead 11 minutes after the restart, only for Nathaniel Chalobah to nod Forest level from a corner midway through the second half.

Despite being pegged back twice, Lomas was delighted with the performance of his side and in particular Welsh international striker Morison, who also grabbed the assist for Woolford’s goal.

He said: “They put the Forest back-four under pressure and asked questions of them, which is what we wanted.

“Stevie took his goal really well and there were signs of Stevie really coming back to the player we know he can be.

“Obviously to keep him fit and firing for the rest of the season will be massive for us.

“There were a lot of positives - to bounce back from Saturday, a lot of energy, a lot of passion, two well-worked goals - so to concede from a set-play in the middle of box was massively disappointing.

“There was a level of passion, commitment, energy and quality, and players won individual battles.

“Units worked really well together in defence, midfield and attack so a lot of positives, but with a tinge of regret that we should have three points.”

Lomas added: “That is six unbeaten at home now and we have got to transfer that to away.

“The players have put down a marker for me.

“You can go away and get beat in the Championship, that is the nature of the league, but it is the manner in which you get beat. We will be a game for anybody if we play like that.

“We want to try and give our home support plenty to shout about. We want teams to fear coming here, and we have now got to transfer the home form into away form to try and shoot us up that table.”

Millwall lined up in a 4-4-2 formation, with Liam Trotter and Nadjim Abdou in the centre of midfield due to the ineligibility of Forest loanee Guy Moussi and injury to Nicky Bailey.

Moussi should be back for Saturday’s visit of Wigan, but Lomas confirmed Bailey will be out for two to three weeks.

“Nicky tweaked a medial ligament about a week ago,” said Lomas.

“I think there must be a curse over Millwall’s training ground, we might have to get the witch doctor in to exercise it.

“It’s the medial ligament curse, we have had four already this year.

“Hopefully now we’ll have a clear run to Christmas and beyond.”

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