1984/85 Previous Next
Millwall (1) 1

Lovell (7)
Chelsea win 4-2 on Agg
Chelsea (1) 1

Cusack o.g. (25)
Sour Note

by Maurice Woolf at the Den

Millwall manager George Graham was disgusted with two of his players' performances, but he was justifiably proud of the way the rest battled.

Graham said: “Two of my players were a disgrace, but the other nine kept battling. It was good experience for us.

“I hope the fans appreciate the football that was played. There was some very good stuff.”

He refused to name the two players but stated he had told them in no uncertain terms what he thought of them.

“We lost our real chance of winning when Dean Neal had to come off. We just fizzled out up front after that.”

“Once Chelsea equalised they were able to feel comfortable and even though we had a chance of taking them after our early goal. I knew our chances had gone when the equaliser came.”

Chelsea boss John Neal said: “We knew that Millwall would cause us a few flutters, but once we equalised we felt comfortable.”


Referee Alan Seville booked six players - Keith Stevens and Lindsay Smith, of Millwall, and Chelsea's Kerry Dixon, Dave Speedie, Keith Jones and Joe McLaughlin.

Once again by a quirk of fate Millwall conceded an own goal to Chelsea when they were riding high.

Dixon claimed the goal from Dave Speedie's cross, but the ball hit Dave Cusack chest and went into the net as Sansome was covering the Dixon header.

This goal came in the 25th minute, 18 minutes after the Lions went into the lead.

Anton Otulakowski was fouled by Colin Lee. Skipper Les Briley took the free-kick and Steve Lovell, unmarked, headed the ball powerfully past the keeper.

And how the Den fans their biggest turnout-for six years - roared the goal. Millwall took complete control until the Chelsea equaliser.

The Lions had every chance of forcing extra time, but their poor finishing let them down

When Neal was injured - he had a groin strain - their chances completely vanished.

Speedie demonstrated the difference between a class player and an ordinary one. One moment he was clearing the ball off his own line, then he was at the other end, chipping Sansome and seeing the ball bit the post.

Millwall: Sansome, Stevens, Roffey, Briley, Smith, Cusack, Lowndes, Bremner, Neal (Sheringham 35 mins), Lovell, Otulakowski.

Chelsea: Niedzwiecki; Lee, Rougvie, Pates, McLaughlin, Bumstead, Jones, Spackman, Dixon, Speedie, Thomas. Sub.Cannonville.

Referee: Alan Seville (Birmingham). Att.: 11,157.

● Dave Cusack turns away in celebration as Lovell's header beats Chelsea
keeper Niedzwiecki

● Flare up at the Den. A Policeman gingerly approaches a burning flare
Dave 'Nightmare' Cusack
Millwall 1 Chelsea 1 (2 -4 on aggreate)

DAVE CUSACK is still fuming over Millwall's Milk Cup dream turned sour.

The luckless Lions defender was the victim of a fluke goal that killed off Millwall's bid to force their way in to the third round draw.

Manager George Graham's side had reduced the 3-1 deficit from the first leg with a sizzling seventh minute goal.

But just minutes later Chelsea’s David Speedie swung a dangerous cross in to the Millwall goalmouth and star striker Kerry Dixon met it with a header that struck Cusack on the chest and beat goalkeeper Paul Sansome.

Afterwards the 28-year-old defender fumed, “It was a really weak header from Dixon, and Paul was right in line with it, waiting to catch the ball.”

“But it just hit me and there was nothing I could do, the ball changed direction completely and just plopped over the line.”

Yet worse was still to come - leading scorer Dean Neal was forced off after 35 minutes with a groin strain.

While, after that, they never looked, likely, to pull back the three goals they needed for victory, the

Lions produced the smooth soccer that has taken them to third spot in Division Three.

They grabbed that early goal after Anton Otulakowski had been fouled and skipper Les Briley sent in a looping free-kick as Steve Lovell rose to head a superb effort.

Otulakowski sent a screaming volley inches over the bar, 10 minutes before the break.

But the best chances fell to 18-year old substitute Teddy Sheringham who squandered three second half opportunities.

Yet while Millwall can curse their luck there is little doubt that Chelsea had something in hand for much of the match.

And as for the widely predicted violence, the only fireworks on the terraces came in the shape of a flare that was thrown from the Chelsea end in the second half.

Manager Graham admitted, Chelsea looked comfortable, and our hopes went with Neal. We played some nice football, but we couldn’t finish it off.

Millwall: Sansome, Stevens, Roffey, Briley, Smith, Cusack, Lovell, Bremner, Neal (Sheringham) Lowndes, Otulakowski.

Referee: Alan Seville (Birmingham) Att: 11,157
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