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Micky Mellon disappointed after Millwall defeat

8 August 2015

Gaffer's postmatch thoughts after Millwall defeat

Manager Micky Mellon was left disappointed after Shrewsbury started their League One campaign with a 2-1 defeat at home to Millwall.

Town had taken the lead through James Collins just ten minutes into the second-half, but Steve Morison's close-range tap in and Lee Gregory's penalty helped the visitors recover to take all three points from the Greenhous Meadow.

And Mellon was frustrated that his side failed to go on and secure victory having opened the scoring.

“Obviously I'm disappointed to lose any game. The most disappointing thing is that we've got our noses in front in a game in which there was not a lot in it,” the 43-year-old said.

“Millwall reacted to our goal better than we did. Suddenly, from having your noses in front, you're 2-1 down. It's tough to take.

“We've gone through the goals and there are little bits of naivety. We're diving in inside the 18-yard box when there's no real need to. They are things that we have to learn from.”

But, despite the loss, Mellon believes that his side more than matched their opponents, insisting that there was very little between the two teams.

“There wasn't anything drastic between the two sides. It was a physical first game of the season, where a little bit of detail was going to be the difference between the sides- we matched them for long spells.

“I said at half-time that it was going to be real fine margins that caused anything of note. We would have liked to have caused them a few more problems in the final third and have a bit more belief when going forward.

“It was ultimately who made the errors first, who defended poorly or who didn't deal with a certain situation.”

The former Fleetwood Town manager brought on both Junior Brown and Shaun Whalley towards the closing stages of the game as Salop went in search of an equaliser but neither managed to make a real impact on the game.

Mellon commented: “We tried to get a bit of width and get two natural wingers at them. I don't think we got enough control to service the two wide men as much as we would have liked.

“Millwall produced some good game management, winning free-kick after free-kick and killing the tempo of the game.

“We have to have a bit more belief in ourselves that we can go and cause teams trouble. We weren't aggressive enough at times when we had the opportunity to get at full-backs, or get up close to the front men. Again, that's something we'll look to improve on.”

Nevertheless, Mellon was pleased with the effort shown by his players.

“I couldn't fault them for their effort and endeavour, and how they competed. I think all over the pitch we did that.

“I think the story of the game is we've got to be a little bit braver, back ourselves and believe we can go on and win the game.

“It's certainly a learning curve for us. We'll look at the performance over the next 24 to 48 hours and if there's anything in particular that we feel we need to improve on then we will.”

Martin Woods started on the right-hand side for the hosts whilst captain Liam Lawrence was left on the bench.

Mellon justified his team selection as being down to the type of game he anticipated against Neil Harris' side.

“We felt that with the type of game it was going to be, we needed a certain type of player in the areas to go and compete for us.

“We wanted to be competitive and tough in the middle of the park. We knew it was going to be that sort of game.

“We just felt that the personnel that we put in gave us a better chance of getting a foothold in the game.”

Town's focus now turns to Tuesday night's trip to Ewood Park, where they face Blackburn Rovers in the first round of the Capital One Cup.

And Mellon believes that the Championship club will provide a very different test to the one provided by Millwall.

“We'll quickly comb over this, get the players recovered and get them ready for another terrific game, which I expect to be totally different.

“We'll pick a team that we believe will give us a good chance of getting a result at Blackburn.”

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