Charlton's run of good form under coach Guy Luzon continued with a 2-1 win at Cardiff this afternoon.
The Addicks had to stage a second-half recovery. Keeper Stephen Henderson was unable to return after the break following a knock, Dmitrovic replacing him. Federico Macheda gave Cardiff the lead early in the second half, turning in Kenwyne Jones' knock-back.
But Addicks substitute Chris Eagles cut back a cross for Tony Watt, who was lurking off his markers to fire home. (In fact, it may have been Roger Johnson who put the cross in according to a tweet from Richard Cawley of the SLP). Then Charlton substitute Simon Church went tumbling under Sean Morrison's challenge in the area, with Yoni Buyens tucking the penalty away on 87 minutes.
Charlton remain 12th: in fact, there is quite a squeezed area in mid-tale with Birmingham 14th on 46 points and Sheffield Wednesday 10th with 49 points. They are, however, 2nd in the form table.
Millwall's troubles continued with a 1-4 defeat at home to Norwich. Beleaguered boss Ian Holloway was jeered by the Spanners every time he emerged from the dugout. Holloway decided to hunker down in his bunker, explaining 'I felt if I came out from the dugout the fans would vent their spleen on me and that would not benefit the team.' Looking for positives, he said, 'I felt the lads kept going and showed a Millwall spirit, but maybe I'm the only one in the ground who did.'
A Welsh report, not surprisingly, gives a more negative view of the game: Dominant Cardiff throw it away
However, the match stats do not really support a picture of dominance by the Bluebirds. Admittedly, they had a lot of shots off target, but led only four to three on shots on target and five to four on corners. Possession was 54-46 per cent in their favour.
This morning's Football League Paper gives its highest scores (8) to Tony Watt ('should have had a penalty') and Chris 'Red Robin' Eagles who replaced Lepoint on 60 minutes and 'galvanised Charlton ... It took the former Manchester United forward less than 60 seconds to register his side's first shot on target in an hour.' Stephen Henderson got a 7 and Jordan Cousins got a 7 for 'a game of two halves like his team. Quiet before the break but lively late on.' Christophe Lepoint gets slated: 'A poor man's Peter Crouch. Brought in to offer height and presence and lacked touch.' His miserable score of 4 will give some comfort to those who doubt the quality of some of our acquisitions.
On the two halves point, Guy Luzon gave the team a telling off at half time. He said, 'We didn't play well in the first half and I told the players at half time that something had to change if we wanted to take three points back to London. In my philosophy, there is no point to play long balls. If you keep the ball and move it, then you have the chance to score goals. That is the first thing of football. We also showed character when we were 1-0 down away from home to get the goal and then to continue playing after the goal.'
By now the evidence is accumulating that he is quite a skilled coach who is able to motivate the players, but hard liners insist they will only chant his name if we beat Millwall at The New Den. Given our record against Millwall, that is a tough challenge to meet. Others point that they have no quarrel with Luzon personally, but rather with Roland.
As far as Stephen Henderson is concerned, he twisted his ankle. Normally reliable sources say that he got on the coach without any strapping on his ankle and shout be fit for the clash against the chicken farmers on Saturday.