Sunderland manager Tony Mowbray was happy to come away from Millwall with a point after a 1-1 Sky Bet Championship draw at The Den.
The Black Cats boss, though, probably has more recollection of his team’s equaliser than the man who scored it.
Both teams are chasing a play-off place in the Championship and the Lions appeared set to lift themselves into the top six after captain Jake Cooper put them ahead in front of a bumper crowd.
They were, however, pegged back by young defender Dennis Cirkin, who was knocked out in the act of bringing the Black Cats level.
It turned out to be the 20-year-old’s last act in a game he had only been part of since the 67th minute, but it was one that ended a week where Sunderland lost the services of top scorer Ross Stewart for the rest of the season on a positive note.
Mowbray, whose side face Fulham in an FA Cup replay on Wednesday, said: “Dennis is concussed, he was out cold on the pitch for a while.
“He’s now awake, he’s not necessarily sure whether he’s scored or not. We’ve been telling him he has.
“Dennis is a brave lion – it’s not the first time he’s scored a headed goal for us in a tight congested six-yard box this year, so we’re delighted to take the point.
“I think it’s really difficult to come and play here, especially with the environment that was created today.
“I’ve been to Millwall a lot over the years and I’ve never seen it full. There’s usually still a fantastic atmosphere with what the fans create, but it was a full stadium today.
“We were a bit frustrated we couldn’t get our game going, but we have to respect the opposition and how they play.”
The largest crowd at this stadium for 28 years (18,524) thought they had seen Millwall go ahead after 28 minutes when George Honeyman pounced after Anthony Patterson fumbled Zian Flemming’s shot.
However, the goal was ruled out after the referee consulted his assistant, leaving Millwall to keep pressing for an opener, with Murray Wallace hitting the bar with a header.
Patterson then denied Honeyman with a good save, but he was powerless to prevent Cooper’s effort from looping in following a scramble from George Saville’s corner in the 59th minute.
Sunderland picked themselves up, however, and earned a point with nine minutes left when Cirkin inadvertently took one in the face from Millwall goalkeeper George Long in heading Alex Pritchard’s free-kick past him.
Millwall boss Gary Rowett said: “I thought it was an incredible atmosphere, that’s the one thing you notice.
“Our fans, when they pack this out, this stadium has a very unique atmosphere, so I thought that really helped the game.
“They’ve had one shot on target with the goal and we’ve had like 15 shots and lots and lots of moments were very contentious.
“In my opinion, and I’ve watched them back so I’m not just sat here bleating about it as a manager that hasn’t won the game.
“I thought we should have had a penalty first half, Tom Bradshaw gets the other side of a full-back, the full-back pulls him then pushes him in the back.
“The referees need to be sure and he just said: ‘I didn’t feel there was quite enough contact to be a penalty.”
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