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Charlton Athletic 2010

Exactly a week had passed since Charlton Athletic club captain Nick Bailey had missed a crucial spot-kick depriving the London club of an appearance at the play-off final at Wembley. However despite narrowly missing out on the chance to return to the Championship at the 1st attempt the Addicks fans were in good spirits when they arrived at the Valley. With the sun shining and temperatures already rising into the 80s as the players ran out on to that hallowed turf, it was certainly shaping up to be an unusually enjoyable Monday morning for our players. And for the Home team it was an extra special occasion, with the home Captain Michael Risely celebrating his 30th in style by playing at the Valley with a team made up of family and friends.

Monday 24th May
The Valley
Charlton Athletic Home vs. Charlton Athletic Away
Kick-Off: 9:30am
Legend: Peter Garland
Match Officials: Gordon Manning, Steve Worsley, Chris Myatt and Peter Cruise

The Away team got the game underway and within minutes had taken the lead through an unfortunate own goal by the Home No 16, Stuart Evans. It was a through ball from the left-foot of Ben Baird which saw Bradley Aimee's shot saved by the keeper but in a moment of madness; Evans tried to clear the rebound behind for a corner-kick but instead watched the ball trickle low into the empty net (0-1).

The Home team were determined to make amends for the early mistake and drove forward dangerously. Striker Aaron Hood nearly bagged the equaliser when the loose ball fell at his feet following a tussle in the box; his goal-bound shot looked destined for the top corner but was tipped over the bar by an amazing one-handed save by goalkeeper David McClelland.

It was the centre-half Yannie Methenitis who got the leveller for the Home team when he latched on to a long punt from goalkeeper Iain Church. The ball sailed high from one box to the other and after shrugging off the challenging defenders Methenitis slotted the ball to the keeper's right and into the corner of the net (1-1).

The game was beginning to hot up with both teams firm in their battle to get the leading goal but it was the Away team that were successful in doing so. Some great individual play by Ryan Brown on the right-hand side of the field saw the winger drive inside and play a square ball across the box where Bradley Aimee was there to finish the job at the back post (1-2).

Just before the break the Home team could have equalised for the second time in the game. Methenitis collected the ball out on the right-wing and swung a deep left-footed cross in to the box, John Risely was on hand but his missed-time volley saw him miss getting a clean strike on the ball and he could only watch as it bounced out for a goal-kick. 

Half-Time: Charlton Athletic Home 1 - 2 Charlton Athletic Away

It was the Home team that got the second-half underway and they looked positively optimistic after their half-time team-talk. In search of an equaliser they pushed forward showing great fight and they were to be rewarded 5 mins in. The ball was won just inside their opponents half by David Lee, before Hood played a through ball to James Carlisle who kept his composure and beat the keeper from inside the area (2-2).

The half-time team-talk for the Home team had certainly been inspirational judging from their second-half performance. Every player was giving it 100% and the boys in the Red and White looked to have taken the lead for the first time in the game but a foul was awarded by the referee. The ball was swung in from a corner and after the keeper got a hand to it and Carlisle headed it towards goal the referee blew for a foul, which was probably for pushing inside the area although the decision was debatable.

Only minutes later at the other end of the field the referee made a vital decision, again awarding a penalty to the Away team for a hand ball inside the area. It was the team captain Gareth Allen that stepped up and although Iain Church chose the correct side he was unable to keep the ball out; a great placed penalty by Allen (2-3).

For the third time now in the game the Home team found themselves searching for a way back into the game. A third equaliser duly came for them when John Risely played the ball inside to Menthenitis who drove in towards the 6 yard box; the goal-scorer looked to cross the ball square across goal but the ball seemed to take a slight deflection and sailed high in to the net. It was a lucky equaliser but deserved nonetheless (3-3).

High on confidence the Home team continued to battle on and for the second time in the match had a goal chopped off to deny them taking the lead. The ball was crossed in to the box and a well executed header by James Carlisle found its way to the back of the net but without question the No 9 was in an offside position and the linesman on the far side called it correctly.

The pressure continued to mount for the Away team as the Home team were piling forward creating chance after chance. The first of these came when the ball found Risely Snr on the edge of the 6 yard box but his low effort was saved by the feet of McClelland. The rebound was then touched back to the edge of the box before it was powered at goal by King, but it was cleared away by the defence. The ball was only cleared as far as Risely Jnr though and his curling effort from the corner of the box produced a fantastic diving save by McClelland to keep the scores level.

The Home team's pressure eventually paid off and it was Aaron Hood who was the hero for the Home team after he latched on to a through ball from Michael Risely. The captain spotted Hood bombing down the right-side and his ball was matched with a perfectly timed run by Hood who closed in on the goalkeeper and rocketed home with a great finish into the top corner from just inside the box (4-3). It was certainly a controversial goal, as the far side linesman had flagged James Carlisle offside, however it could be argued that the referee was correct to wave play on as goalscorer Hood had started his run from an onside position and Carlisle was far enough away to be adjudged to be inactive. However it was clear the Away team didn't fully agree with the decision judging by the extended protests before the restart!

Unfortunately for the Away team the Home team's controversial 4th goal turned out to be the winner, with the referee's whistle bringing to an end what had been a tremendously entertaining, end to end match. Hopefully well worth the early Monday morning start for the band of loyal spectators!

Full-Time: Charlton Athletic Home 4 - 3 Charlton Athletic Away

Man of the Match Home: James Carlisle
Man of the Match Away:
Marcus Webb
Moment of the Match:
David McClelland

Home Team: Iain Church, Matthew Guy, Yanie Methenitis, David Lee, Michael Risely, Steve Cooke, Daniel King, James Carlisle, Gerry Sondh, Aaron Hood, Matthew Manfredonia, Steve Whyman, Alistair Revell, Stuart Evans, John Risely

Mascot: Daniel Guy

Away Team: David McClelland, Andrew Saunders, Marcus Webb, Dan Davis, Ken Brown, Gareth Allen, Ian Willis, Chris Myatt, Ben Baird, Bradley Amiee, Liam Happe, Ryan Brown