Former Lion Alexander scores as Crawley beat Millwall
Crawley Town 2 Millwall 0
A FIRST half strike by Billy Clarke and a second half penalty by former Lion Gary Alexander saw the Reds overcome Championship side Millwall at the Broadfield on Saturday.Crawley Town are due to travel to Millwall's New Den home on August 14 for a Capital Cup fixture and will no doubt by buoyed by their composed and comfortable friendly victory.Crawley had the best of the early possession; however the Lions slowly crept into the game producing chances for Andy Keogh and Josh Wright.Mat Sadler took a bashing in the first half from a typically physical Millwall team, and was forced off the pitch for a short period before returning wearing a number 32 shirt. Sadler was luckier than former Reds left-back Sam Rents, who had to have a metal plate fitted in his jaw after the last time Crawley hosted Millwall in a pre-season friendly two summers ago.The Reds took the lead in the 32nd minute when Dannie Bulman, on the counter-attack, found Billy Clarke. The hard-working forward kept his composure to shoot across Mark Taylor's goal, seeing the ball in off the post. Millwall had a great chance to equalise in the 38th minute when Keogh found himself one-on-one with Reds keeper Paul Jones with Kyle McFadzean unable to make up the ground. The Lions' striker took a punt but Jones was equal to it, diving to punch the ball away.Just three minutes into the second half, captain for the day Gary Alexander made it 2-0 from the penalty spot. Clarke had made a great run into the Millwall box but received a blatant push from Karleigh Osbourne, leaving referee Tim Robinson with no option but to point to the spot. Osbourne, clearly frustrated at himself, lunged in strongly on Josh Simpson on 65 minutes in a tackle that could have warranted a red card in a competitive game.On 69 minutes, caretaker boss Brewster rung the changes with Scott Neilson, Scott Davies, Sergio Torres and Shaun Cooper, for his home debut, coming on for Simpson, Akpan, Bulman and Adams.Charlie Wassmer and John Akinde came on just four minutes later for Claude Davis and Billy Clarke, breaking up the fluency of the Reds.Minutes after coming on, Akinde found himself with a great opportunity to score after an unselfish ball by Davies. Despite the Broadfield faithful cheering the misfiring forward on, Akinde struck the ball well over the crossbar.Crawley ran down the match comfortably, leaving the Reds with a confidence boost ahead of their Capital Cup visit to the New Den on August 14.
Crawley Town: Jones, Connolly (Hunt, 62), Davis (Wassmer, 73), McFadzean, Sadler (John, 89), Akpan (Torres, 69), Simpson (Davies, 69), Bulman (Cooper, 69), Adams (Neilson, 69), Alexander, Clarke (Akinde, 73).
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Millwall: M Taylor, Dunne, Malone, Wright, Smith, Osbourne, Racon, Trotter (Batt, 58), C Taylor (Barron, 65), Keogh, Henderson (Feeney, 58).
Man of the match: Paul Jones