Championship
MillwallMillwall1Nottm ForestNottingham Forest0

Millwall 1-0 Nottingham Forest: Aitor Karanka defiant after Forest lose at Millwall

Ryan Tunnicliffe puts Millwall ahead against Nottingham Forest
Ryan Tunnicliffe's acrobatic first-half strike was his second goal of the season

Under-pressure manager Aitor Karanka says he wants to stay at Nottingham Forest for "many years" and will work to continue to strive to bring Premier League football to the City Ground until he is told otherwise.

A 1-0 defeat against lowly Millwall - courtesy of Ryan Tunnicliffe's overhead kick - means the Reds have lost three matches in a winless five-game run.

The Reds wasted a three-goal lead in a 3-3 draw with Norwich on Boxing Day, adding to mounting speculation that Karanka, who guided Middlesbrough to promotion from the Championship in 2015-16, will lose his job.

But Karanka's side are still only three points adrift of the play-off places.

He told BBC Radio Nottingham that "almost nothing surprises me in football" when asked if he had discussed his future with the club's hierarchy.

"The only think I know is that when I signed, I signed on a two-and-a-half-year project and I am building a squad to take the first step," he added

"I arrived to a project as I did in Middlesbrough with two and a half years to try to do the same. I will work my best, be honest and try to put this club up where it belongs."

There was plenty of support for the Spaniard from the 2,220 fans who travelled to south London, but they saw their side begin slowly and trail to Tunnicliffe's stylish overhead kick inside 10 minutes after a half-cleared corner.

Forest improved in the latter stages of the first half and began to dominate possession, but they lacked guile and good chances were rare.

Joe Lolley forced a decent save from Lions keeper Jordan Archer and Matty Cash shot just wide, while Jack Colback and Lolley both went close after the interval.

Millwall, whose six league victories have all come at home this season, only threatened sporadically with a deflected Jed Wallace the closest they came to adding to the lead.

But they survived with few serious scares to move three points clear of the relegation zone.

Nottingham Forest fans
Forest fans gave good support to their manager at The Den

Karanka said: "I am really pleased with this group of players and with the crowd and I want to say thanks for their support. I want to keep going together.

"I am really pleased because you can win or lose but the fans support. I want to make this crowd proud of the team and I think they are.

"After six months we are only three points below the play-off positions. We have played the top teams and in January we have the transfer market and the team is improving every week.

"We compete against every single team and I am really positive. My target is to work here for many years. Why I signed is because I had a project in front of me."

Millwall manager Neil Harris:

"We got the job done. The noise in the stadium was outstanding.

"We got the early goal and we were terrific in the first half. We played in really good areas, created chances and looked a real threat every time we went forward.

"We could have been better in the second half - especially with the ball. But I think the other day [Wednesday's win over Reading] took a lot out the legs of the players.

"We look a lot healthier with two victories in a short space of time. I've said to the players that it's great what we've done in the last few days, but it must be followed up by finishing this Christmas period off well."

Line-ups

Millwall

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Archer
  • 12Romeo
  • 4Hutchinson
  • 5Cooper
  • 3Meredith
  • 7J WallaceSubstituted forKaracanat 90+1'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 18Tunnicliffe
  • 28LeonardBooked at 15mins
  • 11Ferguson
  • 19ElliottSubstituted forMorisonat 72'minutes
  • 9GregorySubstituted forO'Brienat 57'minutes

Substitutes

  • 13Amos
  • 20Morison
  • 21Karacan
  • 22O'Brien
  • 25M Wallace
  • 26Skalak
  • 27Brown

Nottm Forest

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Pantilimon
  • 27Darikwa
  • 44Hefele
  • 4Fox
  • 18RobinsonBooked at 81mins
  • 24YacobBooked at 31minsSubstituted forGuédiouraat 56'minutes
  • 6Colback
  • 23Lolley
  • 10CarvalhoSubstituted forGrabbanat 65'minutes
  • 14CashSubstituted forJankoat 64'minutes
  • 9Murphy

Substitutes

  • 5Guédioura
  • 7Grabban
  • 8Watson
  • 11Osborn
  • 15Steele
  • 21Janko
  • 43Appiah
Referee:
Tony Harrington
Attendance:
15,273

Match Stats

Home TeamMillwallAway TeamNottm Forest
Possession
Home35%
Away65%
Shots
Home12
Away9
Shots on Target
Home2
Away4
Corners
Home10
Away5
Fouls
Home11
Away8

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Millwall 1, Nottingham Forest 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Millwall 1, Nottingham Forest 0.

  3. Post update

    Attempt missed. Adlène Guédioura (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

  4. Post update

    Jack Robinson (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Shane Ferguson (Millwall).

  6. Booking

    Jem Karacan (Millwall) is shown the yellow card.

  7. Post update

    Jack Colback (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Ryan Tunnicliffe (Millwall).

  9. Post update

    Michael Hefele (Nottingham Forest) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Jem Karacan (Millwall).

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Millwall. Jem Karacan replaces Jed Wallace.

  12. Post update

    Attempt missed. Lewis Grabban (Nottingham Forest) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jack Colback.

  13. Post update

    Steve Morison (Millwall) hits the left post with a right footed shot from the centre of the box. Assisted by Aiden O'Brien.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Daniel Fox (Nottingham Forest).

  15. Post update

    Steve Morison (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  16. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Jake Cooper (Millwall) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

  17. Booking

    Jack Robinson (Nottingham Forest) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Jack Robinson (Nottingham Forest).

  19. Post update

    Jed Wallace (Millwall) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Jack Colback (Nottingham Forest).

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Leeds25156442241851
2Norwich25146547331448
3West Brom25137553322146
4Sheff Utd25135742281444
5Middlesbrough25119527171042
6Derby2512673731642
7Birmingham25911537271038
8QPR2511593132-138
9Aston Villa2591064738937
10Nottm Forest2581253527836
11Bristol City259883028235
12Stoke2581163029135
13Swansea2596103130133
14Hull2596103033-333
15Blackburn2571083140-931
16Sheff Wed2587103141-1031
17Preston2578103741-429
18Brentford2569103535027
19Wigan2575132537-1226
20Millwall2567123039-925
21Bolton2557131732-1522
22Rotherham25410112340-1722
23Reading2548132737-1020
24Ipswich2529141943-2415
View full Championship table

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