Saturday saw Millwall travel to Glanford Park, Scunthorpe looking to restore some hope into our league campaign, the game itself played out in a goalless draw, however it was far from a bore draw. Having both suffered defeats during the week the opening to the game was nervy as expected however once into the rhythm both sides led the attack in an end to end affair. Perhaps telling in the final score, both keepers were kept busy with our league debutant Jordan Archer the busier of the two. Making some smart saves, you can see in the video below…
The biggest news come kick-off was that David Forde had been dropped after conceding 8 in 3 games so far this season. Fans had been calling for the change for a couple of games and anyone at the game on Saturday would agree that Harris’s decision had been justified. Within 6 minutes of the game Archer was called into action, making a good one on one stop, getting down low to his left to deny Paddy Madden, a save I’d argue Forde wouldn’t get down and make. He was again called into action later in the half, saving a long range shot, choosing to punch away rather than attempting to claim the ball. Before the interval he was then called into another save, getting down to his far post from a corner. Into the second half Archer was called upon twice, the first being a reflex save from ex Millwall man Darius Henderson, having committed early on to a blocked shot he showed great agility to get back to his feet and save from Henderson. The only mistake the keeper made was his parry from wide man Adelakun’s shot, going straight into the path of Paddy Madden, however his rebound was ruled as offside.
It’s easy to forget how long David Forde has been with us, if he sees out his contract he will be touching 10 years at the club. Having joined on a free transfer from Cardiff, he made the number one position his own from day one. He wasn’t the full package when he first started for us, but he has developed into a top class international goalkeeper, admittedly he has gone off the cliff with his performances in recent seasons but no one should doubt his commitment to the club. In my time supporting Millwall he does go down as a huge fan favourite, and hopefully when we look back on his time we won’t remember the tail end of his career. Instead we should remember occasions like Leeds away in the play-offs with his penalty save from Jermaine Beckford, or his tripe save away to Forest in 2010 along with another double save against Cardiff last season. These are just a few moments that stand out in my memory, and it’s a shame to see the downfall of player that has always shown how much the club means to him.
The difference in recent performances between Forde and Archer is clear to see, Archer is much more agile in the box. Forde looks a beaten player recently, and the stick he has received from the fans clearly bares on his mind. Perhaps a break in the side might do him the world of good, this was also the case when Maik Taylor was brought in by Kenny Jackett. While Archer might not have the experience which Forde possesses, he brings a confidence and a youthful feel to the spine of the team. With other youngsters such as Thompson also making his first start, it shows what the team is capable of when you bring the younger players in. Fred, Thompson, Nelson and Archer were probably the best players in our side on Saturday, and each received an ovation at the end of the game. We’ve been told that the goal is to get back to the Championship; and Harris has promised he will get us back there. Not many of us expect this to happen overnight, so as fans we would much rather turn up and watch a younger side for the future, rather than a side full of experienced pros.
Do you think we will see David Forde in a Millwall shirt again?