Stevenage were knocked out of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night as two Tom Elliot headers secured victory for Millwall at The Den.
Despite a positive performance for much of the contest, two moments in the second half won the tie for the home side.
There were just two changes from the side that drew 3-3 against Newport in the season opener - Matty Godden and Chris Whelpdale into the XI with Newton and Beautyman dropping out.
In a sparsely packed Den, the game got off to a slow start and understandably so with the lack of atmosphere on display. Despite that, Darren Sarll would have been happy with what he saw from his players as Boro appeared more than a match for their Championship opposition.
Stevenage were comfortable with the ball and enjoyed plenty of possession with Pett, McKee and Gorman running the midfield. Franks and Samuel both saw shots on goal blocked within the first half hour whilst at the other end, Joe Fryer denied Cooper’s header with a brilliant save from close range.
The clearest chance of the half came on 30 minutes though and it was Chris Whelpdale on the end of a brilliant Boro move. After Tom Pett released Alex Samuel behind the defence, the Welshman pulled it back for Whelpdale who could only hit it straight at King in goal. Matty Godden followed up the shot as the ball came loose but King was there again.
Millwall’s attacking threat was limited during the first half but Fraser Franks was needed right on the whistle as he got his body in the way of a loose ball to win a crucial foul inside the six yard box.
A pre-planned substation saw Danny Newton replace Matty Godden at the break and the striker almost made an immediate impact. After winning the ball up the pitch, he laid it for McKee who could only fire over.
The home side improved during the second half and took the lead not long after. Tom Elliot using his impressive frame to jostle for position inside the six yard box before heading the ball home at the far post.
Jonathan Smith replaced Chris Whelpdale after an hour for his Stevenage debut, but there was little the new signing could do as Millwall soon made it 2-0. Elliot found at the far-post again – this time from the opposite side - heading the ball beyond Fryer in goal.
Turgott replaced Pett with just over 15 minutes to go and Boro rallied once more as we approached the final whistle. Although Newton couldn’t hit the target from 12 yards out, his quick feet to work some space inside a crowded box got the Stevenage fans off their feet to show their approval.
With a 2-0 lead in hand, Millwall appeared content with their night's work. Although a late Worrall strike and Onyedinma effort both came close, you felt the Lions knew it was job done.
Although Boro kept on probing and never gave up, a resolute Millwall defence saw the job out and went home with the win.
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