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Millwall hit back twice to earn a point at home to Wigan

Millwall showed their mettle to come from behind twice in a 2-2 draw with Wigan at the Den.

The Latics came flying out of the blocks and took the lead through Anthony Pilkington before captain Shaun Hutchinson headed the hosts level midway through the first half.

And Matt Smith repaid his manager’s faith, cancelling out Antonee Robinson’s first Wigan goal, with a header to level the scores having come off the bench at half-time.

With barely three minutes played the hosts were behind after Pilkington latched onto a Kieffer Moore knock down on the edge of the box and sent a first-time missile past Bartosz Bialkowski.

And the former Cardiff man should have had two inside the first 10 minutes from an almost carbon copy situation as a long ball bounced off the head of Moore and into the path of Pilkington.

This time inside the penalty area, he was able to take a touch but fired his effort wide of the target.

Millwall had cause for concern when captain Hutchinson left the field with what looked like a nasty eye injury but returned minutes later to meet a Jed Wallace corner and level things up with a bullet header.

There was a break in play on the half-hour mark as referee Dean Whitestone confronted both managers on the halfway line before booking Latics boss Paul Cook.

It was the visitors who had the best chance to go in leading at the break as Moore, who was constant aerial threat, met a Pilkington corner after 38 minutes but was denied by a point-blank Bialowski save.

Gary Rowett made a tactical decision at half-time to introduce Smith in place of Connor Mahoney as both teams started the second 45 minutes with two strikers.

It was Wigan who struck first as Joe Garner caressed the ball down following a lengthy spell of passing and laid the ball off to the arriving Robinson who slotted under the Millwall goalkeeper.

But just as they did in the first half, the hosts thrust themselves back into the game as Smith met Shaun Williams’ cross with a neat header to equalise and vindicate his manager’s substitution.

With 15 minutes remaining, Garner gathered the ball up in the box and swivelled before firing straight at Bialkowski from close range.

And Hutchinson kept the scores level and secured a point for the Lions as he cleared Jamal Lowe’s lofted cross which looked like it might creep over the line late on.