A single goal from either of these south London rivals would have ensured the last day of their season could be enjoyed. Instead both Millwall and Crystal Palace face a nervous Saturday afternoon when their respective fates at the bottom of the Championship and top of the Championship will be decided.
Neither did enough to deserve victory during a dreadfully poor game that means Millwall may be relegated if they do not win at Derby County. Palace, moreover, who play Peterborough at home, could slip out of the play-off places if they underperform and results go against them.
However, both sides know that wins will secure their ambitions. Millwall are two points clear of the relegation zone and their manager, Kenny Jackett, is confident of survival. "I thought it was a point gained," he said afterwards. "I think tonight will help us, in terms of the spirit we showed."
Asked if he will be keeping tabs on other scores during the Derby match, he added: "I don't think I will. A point may be enough but quite often when you play for a draw somebody sneaks a goal at the other end. Yes, we could do without a nervous last day but it's in our own hands."
It was clear in the early stages that both sides were in poor form. Palace had not won in eight matches and Millwall had lost their last three, although the home side started more promisingly.
Josh Wright went close with a sweeping shot that flew narrowly over Julian Speroni's crossbar from inside the area following Andy Keogh's cross after 19 minutes. Wilfried Zaha fired the ball across goal at the other end shortly afterwards, only for his team-mate Glenn Murray to deflect it inadvertently behind.
Jackett's side have scored only 24 goals at home in the league this season, the fewest in the Championship, and, despite their pressure and the players battling well in midfield, finding the net looked unlikely.
Rob Hulse was booed off by some home supporters after last week's contentious home defeat by Blackburn and is unlikely to play for the club again, so Keogh partnered Shaun Batt up front. In the closing stages Danny N'Guessan was withdrawn only 14 minutes after being introduced as a substitute himself. "I didn't feel like the substitution worked out," Jackett said. "I thought it was a reflection of his performance. I don't think there was enough there."
Palace looked more dangerous going forward through the trio of Zaha, Murray and Yannick Bolasie and five minutes before half-time Murray was almost played in on David Forde, but the Millwall goalkeeper was alert to the danger and dashed off his line to smother the ball at the striker's feet.
Both teams remained committed but composure was non-existent. Owen Garvan lashed a shot well wide after 51 minutes before Keogh, seemingly having broken free of the Palace defence, was let down by dreadful control.
Murray tumbled to the turf in the Millwall penalty area following a tussle with Alan Dunne but the referee was not convinced and the home full-back waved his opponent up. Zaha then picked up the pieces of the attack but failed to find a yellow shirt with his low cross.
Palace produced the best moment in the 58th minute, when Dean Moxey's quick throw was seized upon by Bolasie who unleashed a fierce drive on target, only for Forde to tip the ball behind for a corner.
"I've been confident in my team all along – the fact is that we've had a horrendous run [of games]. We're one of the lucky teams at the right end," said Ian Holloway, the Palace manager.
"I'm paid to get results. I don't think we were like what we were a couple of weeks ago, when things were just going totally wrong. Let's hope we give our fans something to cheer about, a shot at the play-offs. If we do get in there I think we'll be a handful."