George Honeyman reveals which former Sunderland fans’ favourite helped his attacking game after opening Millwall goal account


George Honeyman has spoken of his delight at opening his Millwall goal account on Saturday.

The midfielder scored the equalising as the Lions came from 2-0 down to beat Coventry 3-2 at The Den.

“I’m delighted, said Honeyman. “Delighted more with the three points, but it’s nice to get off the mark. I’ll definitely take that after the first 15 minutes, 20 minutes or whatever. I’m buzzing.”

The former Hull captain was restored to the starting line-up following his red card in the EFL Cup defeat at Cambridge which saw him miss the defeat at Sheffield United.

“I feel like, after a red card, you want to produce and help the team,” he said. “I don’t think it was my best performance personally, but it’s nice to get off the mark with a goal and contribute in a way. Onwards and upwards for me, I think.”

The Lions now face two tricky looking away trips in the space of four days with a number of players missing, starting with tonight’s clash at Swansea.

“That’s the Championship in a nutshell,” said Honeyman. “It’s always busy, it’s about how you recover and go again. It just sets us up nicely for a busy week ahead, let’s go ahead and produce on Tuesday night.

“I’m playing in a really advanced position and I’ve got to contribute with goals and assists. To have a couple of those to my name after two games, that’s what I’ve got to keep doing. Keep doing my stuff, winning the ball and then go on and produce in the final third.

The Lions have lost just twice at home in 2022 with the atmosphere generated by the fans being a key reason for their success in SE16. It’s safe to say the 27-year-old is savouring playing there.

“I’ve absolutely loved it. My family were pretty blown away from the first game of the season. I think they would’ve loved it again today, and I can see why the club has had a successful home record in the last few seasons. Long may it continue, because when we get on the front foot, you can feel the momentum that kind of sucks the ball into the goal. That’s great.”

Gary Rowett’s side lost a lot of leadership in the summer with the likes of Jed Wallace and Alex Pearce leaving the club, but in Honeyman, a captain at both Sunderland and Hull have someone who can provide leadership and guidance to the younger members of the squad.

“I think it’s quite an experienced squad. Billy [Mitchell] and Shacks [Jamie Shackleton] may be younger in age but I don’t feel like they’re that personality-wise. I think they’ve got wise heads on them. It’s a really good, competitive squad and it’s really well experienced.

“At Hull, especially, one of my big jobs was to help the young lads come through and I’ll do that naturally. But I feel like there’s a lot of lads helping out in that and there’s a really good balance to the squad.”

His goal was an important moment in the game, bringing the scores level but also his knowledge and experience to be in the right place at the right time was so important.

“It was drilled into me from a young age from my youth team coach.

“If you didn’t follow in a shot, you used to get it in the neck. I can still hear his voice now, shouting at people who weren’t following through. It’s kind of just second nature for me now. It was Kevin Ball, ex-Sunderland captain. He was definitely regimented on people following in, and all my goals in my career are probably off instinct and just moving in the box. If you move, you’re more likely to fall onto the ball, that’s where I’ve got quite a lot of the goals in my career.”

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