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Charlton Athletic 0-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Saturday, 17th Apr 2021 14:31

Town drew 0-0 with Charlton Athletic at the Valley to extend their goalless streak to 439 minutes. The Blues, who last found the net in the Good Friday victory over Bristol Rovers, were the better side in the first half with James Norwood and Keanan Bennetts both going close early on, while the Addicks were on top in the second as the sides played out Town’s fourth 0-0 draw in six matches.

Kane Vincent-Young, Mark McGuinness, Andre Dozzell, Teddy Bishop and Bennetts returned to the Town line-up with club captain Luke Chambers, Toto Nsiala, Aaron Drinan, Alan Judge, who has played his last game for the club for contractual reasons, and the suspended Josh Harrop dropping out of the XI.

Vincent-Young was at right-back of a back four as the Blues switched back to 4-2-3-1. McGuinness joined Luke Woolfenden at the heart of the defence in a first-time partnership under new manager Paul Cook with Stephen Ward skippering at left-back. Tomas Holy continued in goal.

In midfield Dozzell joined Flynn Downes in the centre with Bennetts and Gwion Edwards the widemen, on the right and left respectively, and Teddy Bishop behind lone out-and-out striker James Norwood.

Chambers was among the subs for the third time this season and only the sixth time in the league since joining Town in the summer of 2012. Nsiala and Drinan missed out on places in the 18.

Charlton manager Nigel Adkins, in charge of his new club at the Valley for the first time, made one change from the team which won 2-1 Sunderland last weekend with Liam Millar replacing the injured Ian Maatsen in a 4-3-3 system.

The game started slightly chaotically with a number of Charlton players starting to take a knee as the Blues kicked off. Midfielder Darren Pratley briefly protested to referee Craig Hicks but the game continued.

Town twice went close to going in front in the third minute. First, Norwood flicked a header from Dozzell’s free-kick on the left goalwards and Ben Amos palmed away to his right. Then the loose ball fell to Bennetts at an angle and the winger smashed a powerful goal-bound shot which home skipper Jason Pearce diverted into the air and over from just in front of the line.

The Blues had started brightly and determinedly, the players perhaps bristling from manager Cook’s pre-match press conference comments, but in the eighth minute Ryan Inniss stooped to head powerfully straight at Holy from a corner on the left.

However, Town continued to dominate possession, keeping the ball confidently higher up the field than was usually the case under former manager Paul Lambert, but without managing to create another chance.

On the quarter-hour, a rare Addicks break saw Alex Gilbey pace past Woolfenden on the Charlton left but the central defender got back to block his cross and the ball bounced back to Holy.

The home side subsequently had a spell in charge but the Blues quickly got back on top. There was a blow for Town in the 25th minute when Norwood was forced off with another recurrence of the hamstring problems which have hampered him for some months.

With the game increasingly open as the half-hour mark was reached, there was a scare for the Blues when Holy failed to hold onto a deep cross from the left. Jayden Stockley seized on the loose ball with the keeper grounded but shot weakly towards goal and McGuinness cleared off the line.

On 33 Pratley hit a shot from distance which hit Stockley, then McGuinness before bouncing through to Holy. The Addicks were seeing more of the ball but without looking particularly dangerous.

Four minutes later, the Blues broke away through Bishop, the midfielder finding Jackson to his left. The sub cut back to Bennetts, who blazed over first time as he burst into the box.

Dozzell was shown the game’s first yellow card in the 43rd minute - his ninth in the league - for a cynical trip on Liam Millar as Charlton broke forward. Soon after, Diallang Jaiyesimi joined him in the book for a foul on Edwards.

That was the last action of a half in which the Blues had been the better side, albeit without creating too many chances.

They had started strongly, going close twice in the third minute, and dominated the ball for the first 20 minutes or so. Charlton came into it more after that but only really threatened following Holy’s error, while Jackson’s pace had been a danger for the Blues following his introduction, particularly when sent away by the lively Bishop, with Bennetts’s effort over the best opportunity in that spell.

Six minutes after the restart, following a three-times-taken free-kick, Vincent-Young tricked his way past his man before cutting in and hitting a left-foot shot over.

On 54, Ward crossed low from the left but far too close to home keeper Amos, who claimed low at a stretch.

Charlton had shown little since the break but in the 57th minute they went close to going in front. Inniss headed a corner from the right back towards goal, Jaiyesimi flicked on and Holy reacted very quickly to block before McGuinness hooked away the loose ball.

Just prior to the hour mark, with the game again increasingly open, a Bennetts cross from the Town right was blocked after good work from Bishop, then at the other end Millar was teed-up on the edge of the Blues area by Stockley but Holy got down well to save. On 61 Bennetts was swapped for Armando Dobra, while Charlton switched Pratley for Ben Watson.

The Albanian U21 international was quickly into the action, taking the ball into the area before feeding Edwards to his left. The Welshman took a touch inside before scuffing his shot to Amos. It was a decent opportunity and Edwards will feel he ought to have made more of it.

On 66 Dozzell was fortunate not to be shown a second yellow card when he pulled back Jaiyesimi on the edge of the Addicks area as the home side looked to break following a Town corner. Two minutes later, Charlton sub Watson was booked for a late challenge on Edwards.

Town replaced Ward and Bishop, who had faded in the second half having probably been the pick of the Blues’ players in the first, for Myles Kenlock and Freddie Sears. Dozzell was handed the captain’s armband.

Kenlock’s first involvement was to reach a loose ball first after Holy had failed to hold on to Jake Forster-Caskey’s low shot from the edge of the area. The keeper really ought to have done better.

Forster-Caskey, the stepson of former Blues striker Nicky Forster, wasn’t far away at all with a curling first-time effort from just outside the box in the 73rd minute which only just looped over.

The Blues were finding themselves under some pressure for the first time in the match and on 75 Ben Purrington crossed low from the left for Stockley, but his shot was too close to Holy, who saved.

Charlton continued to look the more threatening side with centre-half Ryan Inniss nodding two left-sided corners back into the danger zone from beyond the far post with Edwards clearing the first and Holy just getting there ahead of an Addicks player from the second.

In injury time, there was a brief flashpoint between Woolfenden and Inniss which referee Hicks settled without use of his cards. Moments later, the Surrey-based official ended the afternoon.

Overall, a draw was probably a fair result with the Blues having been on top on the first half and the Addicks in the second with neither side creating too many opportunities throughout.

Despite another draw, Town were much better than they were at Wimbledon.

The result and the scorelines elsewhere see the Blues stay ninth but now four points off the top six with five left to play.

Charlton: Amos, Purrington, Pearce (c), Jaiyesimi, Forster-Caskey, Stockley, Gilbey, Pratley (Watson 61), Matthews, Inniss, Millar. Unused: Maynard-Brewer, Gunter, Oshilaja, Famewo, Shinnie, Schwartz.

Town: Holy, Vincent-Young, Woolfenden, McGuinness, Ward (c) (Kenlock 70), Downes, Dozzell, Bennetts (Dobra 61), Bishop (Sears 69), Edwards, Norwood (Jackson 25). Unused: Cornell, Chambers, Skuse. Referee: Craig Hicks (Surrey).

Photo: PagePix

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BromleyBloo added 14:32 - Apr 17
With the changes much improved - okay not difficult. Started well and we were the better team, but first half about even although we probably had the best chances. Looked a better shape, more organised and increased effort. Downes, Dozzell (although the inevitable silly yellow card) Bishop mix seemed to work okay, but Norwood off early injured again, Bennetts still awful and Holy almost with a terrible clanger, as well as continuing to regularly just boot the ball in to touch - is it really that difficult to keep it on the pitch?!?

Second half still doing okay and at least matching Charlton. KVY on fire, Dobra on for Bennetts and we started to push on, even looked threatening on occasions, but in spite of the effort it seemed to peter out going forward. So poor upfront again and created few scoring chances. Don’t understand why Hawkins hasn’t had a chance, at least getting on the subs bench???

So we competed well and much better, albeit far from good/great and we still can’t score!!!

Season still alive......................just!

Tractor_Boy_in_HK added 14:33 - Apr 17
Well...we weren't terrible. But still no creativity from the midfield or service up top.

We struggle to play the ball into the box and yet almost every free kick we play the ball short and after about 10 passes end up going backwards nearly every time. I really don't get it...

Mick Mills is right. This team, and many other in League One, just aren't good enough to play cute, possession football.

dirtydingusmagee added 14:35 - Apr 17
sharpen the axe Paul ,

iaintaylorx added 14:35 - Apr 17
Obviously, it is very worrying that we still cannot score - 4 games in a row now! But, that performance was much better and the players showed a fair bit of fight which we cannot knock. Against an in-form Charlton side, away from home, a point isn't the worst side. Dobra needs to start against Northampton over Bennetts as he looks like a player who can do something to get us a bit excited. Bishop looked lively and Jackson chased every ball. Great to see KVY getting 90 minutes too.

We don't deserve promotion this year, but it's STILL miraculously achievable considering how bad our recent run has been, so who knows?!

Linkboy13 added 14:36 - Apr 17
Considering the amount of changes to the lineup not a bad result. Dozzell captain wow doesn't exactly lead by example.

dirtydingusmagee added 14:37 - Apr 17
Norwood excess baggage, needs to go.

TimmyH added 14:37 - Apr 17
ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ...yet another 0-0 who would have thought!?!

Here's some truly diabolical statistics:

11pts from the last 10 games (relegation form)
370+ minutes without a goal
3 of the last 5 goals have been either fortuitous or handed to us.
23rd in the league for goals scored

Yes ladies and gentlemen we are truly shocking! PC keep that guillotine sharp...

TractorCam added 14:37 - Apr 17
439 minutes + all the additional minutes added on at the end of halves.

Don't flatter this disgraceful squad!

Tractorboy1985 added 14:38 - Apr 17
ALL of the youngsters are OVERRATED!! just because they are from our academy and ‘our own’ doesn’t mean they deserve an automatic place in the team! On their day Bishop Woolfenden and Downes are worth keeping but I’ve still not seen enough for them to have the recognition from supporters! We need wet and windy players in the summer along with 1-2 flair players for this club to succeed again! In Cook I trust and he must be given to at least October/November to make his stamp! COYB

Blue_Meanie added 14:39 - Apr 17

reva added 14:42 - Apr 17
why does cook and previously Lambert continue to favour 1 up front? Other sides change formation - Charlton today 433 - we don't have the players (other than Norwood) to play this system or do we?

TimmyH added 14:45 - Apr 17
Yep forgot the goaless 2nd half against Bristol Rovers - just gets worse!

cat added 14:47 - Apr 17
Hanging in there. If you can’t buy a goal then a nil, nil is probably the best you can hope for. Better performance, but still miles off the pace.

DifferentGravy added 14:53 - Apr 17
Fairly similar to how we played under Lambert. 5 decent minutes in first half where we created a couple of chances. Similar start to the second half. An improved effort but not much else to cheer. Downes was everywhere. Bish huffed n puffed. KVY played very well second half until he tired(understandably). Think Cook may have been right....we dont seem very fit.

Based on the plus/minus contribution to the team, I would be keeping Wilson, Downes, KVY, Woolfy and Bish in the squad. I like Norwood and have stood up for him, he has been far and away our most attacking threat....but he is alway injured. The rest just havent done nearly enough.

Chambers, Ward, Sears, Edwards, Scuse, Jackson def have to go....clear the decks.

Toto is too much of a liability.... worth a red, a couple of pens and a few own goals every season. I want to like Dozzell and on the rare occasion he drives forward he looks exciting. But i still cant see what he is giving to the team...other than sideways football, bookings and losing his marker

For me, it looked as if Cook thought he could come in and tweak the team and we would rocket up the league. In desperation he has tried every player and formation to get something out of them...which may not have been the right idea in the end. Heck, even I thought this squad was good enough. But this team created by Shambert needs breaking up and rebuilding. Hopefully Cook is the man to take us forward.

ringwoodblue added 14:57 - Apr 17
Boring. Roll on next season.

slimjim added 15:00 - Apr 17
PL 50 points from 30 games. PC 11 points from 11 games with essentially the same squad- go figure ?

multiplescoregasms added 15:06 - Apr 17
Looking forward to the next player interview, and them saying that Northampton is now a must win game. No goals in 439 minutes. What a bunch of amateurs.

chepstowblue added 15:06 - Apr 17
Looking forward to seeing a goal next august.Just think how Charlton fans are feeling tonight.They couldn't beat us !

algarvefan added 15:10 - Apr 17
Lets be honest here, a few weeks ago talking about the run in this would have seemed a good result away from home, a game IMO we should have won. We still have an outside chance of the Play Offs and who knows if we make it.

Keep the faith guys.

1psw1ch added 15:13 - Apr 17
Boring boring boring,, shambles of a club

tractorboybig added 15:13 - Apr 17
cook the motivator and arranger..........what crap

Gforce added 15:15 - Apr 17
At least you know who is finally on the bench and getting closer to the exit door.

rgp1 added 15:19 - Apr 17
@ Slimjim I point out Lamberts points tally on the forum. Yes you are right Cooks form is relegation. As Stuart Watson said the other day he should not be immune from criticism.

That doesn't mean he has to go but just stop singing to the supporters tune and just get on with the job. As today has proved the players can do it but just not in the final third.

Chris_Knights added 15:24 - Apr 17
Two culprits ..... Lambert and Evans .... keep saying it will get worse before it gets better. The manager will sort it out .... Chambers, Skuse, Ward, Sears, Norwood anD Drinan all need to go and don’t get me started on Ollie Hawkins !!! The manager needs time to sort the mess of the last 13 years out. Judge him this time next year.

blues1 added 15:27 - Apr 17
Slimjim. So lambert managed less than 2 points a game in 30 games, cook has a point a game in 11, having had just 1 weeks full training, in which the players werent even fit enough to do every session. And with a squad completely mismanaged by Lambert over the past 3 seasons. You can quote all the stats you like, but they aren't comparable due to the length of time they here, or number of games. Go figure?

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