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FA to investigate Middlesbrough's game at Millwall

Police step in during Millwall's match with Middlesbrough
Trouble flared in the home section after Scott McDonald's 62nd-minute goal for Middlesbrough

The Football Association will look into the reports of crowd trouble during Middlesbrough's 3-2 win at Millwall.

The match was almost called off when missiles were thrown at the linesman and visiting keeper Jason Steele after Scott McDonald put Boro 2-1 up.

An FA spokesman said: "We will await the referee's report on the incidents and seek the observations of the club."

In a statement from Millwall, the club confirmed that those caught throwing missiles would be banned for life.

It continued: "Arrests have already been made, and we anticipate there will be more to follow.

"As a club we have made tremendous progress over the past three years on and off the pitch. We have an excellent manager, a developing team and an ambitious board, all of whom are working very hard to see the club competing with the best.

The referee wanted to bring the teams off but both managers didn't think it was the right decision

Boro boss Tony Mowbray

"This cannot be allowed to be undermined by a minority who apparently believe they can do as they like."

Millwall led through Neil Harris's first-half volley but were pegged back by Tony McMahon's free-kick before McDonald's disputed strike on 62 minutes.

Play was held up for several minutes as referee Chris Sarginson went to the dugouts to speak to both managers.

Boro boss Tony Mowbray added: "The referee wanted to bring the teams off but both managers didn't think it was the right decision."

Millwall boss Kenny Jackett added: "I'm not condoning it, but I do like the passion and enthusiasm.

"I didn't think it would have been the right decision [to stop the game] but I told the ref to ask the Boro keeper. We felt that things would settle down, which they did.

"From our fans' points of view, perhaps they felt aggrieved at one or two decisions which didn't go their way.

Newspaper reports and TV coverage made little mention of football - once again the name Millwall was linked in people's minds with hooligan behaviour. This has to stop

Millwall statement

"And some of the decisions we've had lately have been tough."

Mowbray said: "What I'd say as the opposing manager is that what an asset it is to have that intensity and noise from the stands every week, but you overstep the mark when objects start coming on the pitch."

The victory moved Middlesbrough seven points clear of the relegation zone, while it was Millwall's first home defeat since early November as their challenge for a play-off place faltered, leaving them in ninth position.

The Millwall statement also confirmed that the club would now not be opening a further section of the Den for an upcoming fixture.

"We had planned to open the lower tier of the North Stand for one of the big games we have coming up at The Den.

"In the light of what happened here at the weekend we will not be doing so, which hampers our attempts to increase our attendances and hits us financially.

"The newspaper match reports and TV coverage made little mention of the football, and once again the name Millwall was linked in people's minds with hooligan behaviour. This has to stop."



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see also
Millwall 2-3 Middlesbrough
18 Feb 11 |  Championship


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