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November 26 2020 10.19am

Palace 1 - 3 Millwall

Sat Sep 8 2001 - League

The eagerly-awaited south London derby game ended with a convincing 3-1 win for Millwall against lack-lustre Palace side.

Millwall ended a poor run of league results in style at Selhurst Park, while Palace suffered their second defeat on the spin.

A second half brace from Steve Claridge was enough to snatch victory, after the sides went in at the break level at 1-1. Richard Sadlier got the first on the stroke of half-time.

Tony Popovic could only half head clear a Paul Ifill cross, David Livermore got a little touch on it and it arived at Sadlier's feet and he fired home from close range.

Millwall's lead lasted less than a minute. Aki Rihilahti found Dougie Freedman, who ran at the Millwall defence, passed to Simon Rodger, who shot low past the Tony Warner in goal and Clinton Morrison touched the ball over the line.

In the 52nd minute, Claridge put the Lions back in the lead. Tim Cahill headed David Livermore's 52nd minute corner back in the box and Claridge stabbed the ball home.

Millwall continued their second half domination and Claridge added the third decisive goal. Robbie Ryan lofted a high ball, to which Claridge chased.

Popovic and keeper Matt Clarke, making his debut after his 1.35m move from Bradford, both thought the other had it and Claridge nipped it to toe poke past the on-rushing keeper for the third.

Man of the match: Julian Gray (A constant threat down the left hand side).

Chant of the match: "Your're the scum of South London!"

Post match comments:

Bruce said: "The problem we've got is our defending, and there is a lot to work on. We know we have to defend better and get more difficult as a team to beat.

"We had chances and you need to take those in a derby, but when you concede 70 goals last year, you realise you will have to do something about it.

"There are a lot of young players here who need to learn quickly. We can't keep having to score two or three goals every game to win matches.

On the last goal, Bruce said: "It was a genuine mix up between the 'keeper and the centre half. Twelve months ago, Clarke was touted for England.

"He's held his hands up and said he should have claimed the ball. In time, he'll prove to be a very good asset for this club. It does stick in my throat but it just wasn't to be."

Millwall boss Mark McGhee was naturally delighted with the result. He said: "To play the way we did without Steven Reid and Lucas Neill was reassuring.

"We know we've still got a lot to learn, but I'm pleased with the second half performance."

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Match Stats

Ground: Selhurst Park (Attendance: 21641)

Palace: Clarke, Smith, Harrison (Kirovski 85), Popovic, Austin, Gray, Rodger, Riihilahti (Black 61), Mullins, Freedman, Morrison.

Subs not used: Kolinko, Berhalter, Thomson.

Booking: Austin.

Goal: Morrison 45.

Millwall: Warner, Lawrence, Ryan, Nethercott, Dyche, Bircham (Stamp 68), Cahill, Ifill, Livermore, Sadlier, Claridge.

Subs not used: Gueret, Tuttle, Kinet, Savarese.

Bookings: Cahill, Livermore.

Goals: Sadlier 45, Claridge 50, 90.

Referee: C Foy (St Helens)

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