Saturday, 11 April 2015

Honours even at Hillsborough

The mid-table clash with Sheffield Wednesday ended in a 1-1 draw. Charlton remain 11th.

Gudmundsson put in an early shot as Charlton faced Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough in the presence of 828 Addicks . Eagles controlled a ball from a free kick by Johnson well and forced a corner. The home side were able to clear.

A shot from Eagles was well over. In a subsequent promising move, Church was caught offside.

Wednesday made their first attack after twelve minutes, rather than lumping the ball into the box, and put their shot just wide.

Eagles put the ball in the back of the net, but it was ruled out in an unfair offside decision.

Vetokele put in a shot, Church put in a scuffed shot and it was deflected by the keeper for a corner.

Wednesday advanced, it was four against two, but Henderson smothered the ball as the home crowd were roused from their subdued state.

Charlton staged a great break started by Church and Fox put the ball just over the bar. Charlton mounted an attack from a free kick, but Church was caught offside.

Jordan Cousins was having a great game in midfield.

Wednesday won their first corner of the game just after the half hour mark. The header went over the bar.

Church put in a shot and the keeper dived at his feet and saved it at the expense of a corner. In the subsequent play, Westwood put his body in the way of a venomous shot from Fox.

Charlton faced a moment of danger after failing to deal with a throw in, but Johnson managed to get something on the shot.

The ball came in from the right and Wednesday went ahead through Lavery, who was on his own in the six yard box, on 40 minutes against the run of play.

HT: Owls 1, Addicks

Wednesday had an early attack, Gomez failed to control the ball, but the shot from Isgrove went straight at Henderson.

Hutchinson got a yellow card for a tackle on Gudmundsson which put him on the floor. He had already been taken out by Hutchinson in the first half.

Wednesday won a corner. Johnson was able to get the ball clear, but the Owls got another corner on 54 minutes. Buyens headed clear. The home side had made the brighter start to the second half. The Charlton forwards were not getting much service.

Simon Church went off, not too happy, and Tony Watt came on. Gudmundsson was taken out by Helan.

Wednesday had an opportunity to make it 2-0, but failed to take the chance. Charlton won a corner from a free kick, but it was cleared. Tony Watt did seem to have lifted things.

Wednesday made a double substitution. Eagles put in a great shot, the keeper saved but Gudmundsson got it on his left foot and scored to equalise.

Lavery put in a shot in out of nowhere and hit the post and then another shot from Isgrove hit the crossbar.

The lively Lavery was replaced by May. Eagles was replaced by Diarra with Cousins going out to the left.

Wednesday had a great chance from a cross, but May missed it. Diarra put Solly in a difficult position and he had to commit a foul.

Wednesday were given a free kick in a dangerous position, quite why was unclear, but it gave the referee a chance to get his spray out. It led to a corner.

Maguire fired in a shot which was deflected but Henderson collected it.

Four minutes were added on. A free kick went straight into Henderson’s arms. Zayatte went down from a knee to the head and Tony Watt put the unconscious player in the recovery position straight away.

A fan who was there had the following to say.

It managed, somehow, to be simultaneously irritatingly scrappy and surprisingly entertaining. The pitch, though better than ours last season, was a mess, particularly down our right in the first half, with Gudmundsson consequently unable to run with the ball and lots of frustratingly squandered possession. We rarely lost the ball for long though, and were by far the better team approaching the interval. Their goal was perhaps their only moment of quality in the whole half though, some very neat interplay on the touchline resulting in an excellent cross that maybe Henderson might have claimed?

They were buoyed by the goal in the second period and dominated possession without really threatening, until we scored out of nothing, one of Jóhann's extraordinary finishes, where still having a lot to do turns into a bulging net in the blink of an eye.

We were still celebrating when they hit the post a couple of times in quick succession, and we were lucky that their mountainous substitute striker had about as much skill as, well, a mountain when well-placed to win it, but Tony Watt's introduction kept them occupied at the back (I was surprised that Church rather than Vetokele made way, as was Churchy by the look of it) and by the end, while we perhaps shaded it, there was probably never a better example of a 'fair result'.

Player ratings

Henderson 7 Little to do, replays will show if he might have claimed the cross for the goal

Solly 7 I'm far from convinced he's captaincy material, but hisusual assured self

Gomez 9 Wow. First time I'd seen him (other than sitting on the bench) and I see now what you all mean. For me, simply the best player on the pitch.

Johnson 6 I saw his debut, which heralded the start of all those 3-0s, but today he was less impressive, though admittedly neither he or Joe were overly extended.

Fox 8 A different player from the nervous youngster of early in the season. Wiggins was on the bench today but I can't see him getting back in the team?

Eagles 7 Possibly a generous rating, but I think he has something and I'd give him a contract. Then again I bigged up Florent Rouamba when we signed him, and pined loudly for Andy Delort...

Cousins 6 Seemingly undroppable, but it's hard to spot any improvement from a year ago; still a work in progress, still an undeniably huge engine, but you do begin to wonder about him, don't you?

Buyens 6 The usual curate's egg. but more involved than I was expecting and a decent shift.

Gudmundsson 8 If he had any pace, he'd be playing for Barcelona orsomeone, but their loss is our gain. In the game from start to finish (unlike at Boro, where he disappeared almost as soon as he scored); keepinghim surely has to be our number one priority this summer?

Church 6 Writes itself, as ever. Worked his socks off, not quite good enough.

Vetokele 5 Seems at odds with himself at the moment. Plenty ofeffort, too many petulant fouls, never caused the defence a significant problem.

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