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Interviews

Pre-Match | Hill Ahead Of Millwall FA Cup Tie

25 January 2018

Manager Keith Hill spoke to iFollow ahead of Saturday’s Emirates FA Cup fourth round tie away at Millwall.

It is the fourth time in five seasons that Dale have reached the fourth round, and it is a competition that excites Hill, who is looking forward to Saturday’s tie.

“I certainly do [get excited about the FA Cup] and we give it a lot of respect,” said Hill.

“It’s a great opportunity for us to earn revenue as well as dream, so for me it’s a double success and it’s something that, since I came back to the football club five years ago, I’ve taken very seriously.”

Millwall are placed in a comfortable mid-table position in the Championship, having achieved promotion via the League One playoffs last season.

They are unbeaten at home in almost three months, and Hill is wary of the problems that Neil Harris’ side can pose.

“They play the Millwall way and you’ve got to be strong and stand up to it.

“They’re an excellent Championship side having secured promotion last season. They do offer problems to the opponents and we know what we have to deal with.

“It’s a game that we’re looking forward to. It takes away from the league fixtures and we’ll be going down there playing on a decent pitch at a decent stadium.

“We did well last season there, and the season before we lost narrowly. They’ve been exciting games every time we’ve played against them.”

Ian Henderson’s stoppage time penalty secured a 3-2 victory at The Den in League One last season, whilst the sides played out an entertaining 3-3 draw at the Crown Oil Arena.

“We got a bit of luck [in the 3-2 win], there’s no question about that. There was a period during that game approaching half-time where we could have gone 3-1 down. I made a substitution five minutes before half-time and changed things around.

“We took the game to the opponents in the second half, but again during that period of the game, where we equalised and then we got a last-minute penalty, we could have quite easily lost, and the same situation happened at home as well when it was 3-3.

“Either side could have won it, we both missed chances and it ended up 3-3. So, we have had the ability to score against Millwall and so have they against us, so it should be an open and entertaining game.”

Hill also gave an update on the injuries within the squad.

“Niall Canavan and Keith Keane are now long-term, with season ending injuries. Steve Davies is two or three weeks away. Joe Thompson could potentially return to the squad.

“We’re going to run with the same sort of squad that we had when we played Doncaster in the FA Cup.”

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