Garry Monk has bemoaned costly mistakes from ‘naive’ Boro which lead to another dismal defeat and heaped even more pressure on an already struggling side.
It was an afternoon that gave Boro a chance to make it back-to-back victories – but as goes the narrative of this season, it was a chance that they yet again failed to take. Two first half goals from Jed Wallace and George Saville were enough to give the Lions three points despite a Stewart Downing strike that gave Monk’s side a glimmer of hope.
The result means Boro fall down to tenth and, although they remain five points off the play-offs, they are now a staggering 19 off the league leaders Wolves.
“It was probably an easy game plan in terms of preparation and knowing exactly what to expect,” Monk told Boro’s website. “We prepared the players all week for what was going to be a very direct team.
“The first 37 minutes of the game I feel we dealt with those situations well and created some really good chances which we should have scored from. Then after that point there was some really naive defending in situations that we prepared all week for.
“It was so naive and costly as well with the goals and again, they were avoidable. I feel like a broken record – I’m repeating myself a lot. Too many times there have been naive, schoolboy mistakes that put you on the back foot and you give yourself a mountain to climb.
“We got the response in the second half, we got the goal and had a couple more chances to get the equaliser but we didn’t take them. It’s so frustrating. We prepared all week for this and to then go out naively, especially in the first half, and lose those two goals to things we’ve prepared for is very frustrating.
“You can’t legislate for them. We have no other choice but to work. The margin for error now is minimal, if we want to achieve something successful we can’t keep doing this. It’s schoolboy stuff, there’s no getting away from that. It’s very hard to take and very frustrating for everyone involved.
Stewart Downing got Boro back in game with a long-range strike which proved too hot to handle for returning Millwall keeper Jordan Archer. Monk, however, says it wasn’t good enough.
“We’ve said that a lot this season. We’ve had chances in the first 5-10 minutes where we could’ve taken the lead – we didn’t. Then we had the schoolboy defending which was really simple stuff. We scored a goal and we did have other chances but it was so frustrating.
“Last week was a step forward, everything was done right – we got the win, simple as that. This week, in important situations we got out battled and it proved very costly once again.”