Charlton threw away a 2-0 lead against Bolton Wanderers at The Valley last night to end up with a 2-2 draw. With MK Dons winning, they slipped back into the relegation positions. As a fan near me commented, 'Both teams look like they are going to be relegated.'
Defensive weaknesses were once again in evidence, offsetting two well-worked goals. However, what struck me was the absence of the midfield or, at any rate, its inability to contribute to the game in the way it should have done.
Once we went 2-0 ahead up, we started to be a little casual and Bolton regained possession, although, to their credit, they did not give up in the way that we might have done. Our play started to lose its pattern, we failed to press them enough, and it was panic stations in defence.
The Addicks led after 27 seconds when Ademola Lookman fired in, after being set up by a great move by Reza, before the 18-year-old forward doubled their lead from close range. Heskey tapped in his first goal since Boxing Day, then Josh Vela smashed in a deflected 25-yard effort to level. Heskey became the oldest Championship scorer this year.
The official attendance last night was 12,294, the worst at The Valley since March 1998 and below the attendances achieved in three years in League One. Judging from the jackpot prize, the actual attendance was probably 8,000-9,000.
In my view Henderson could have saved the first goal. Diarra was below his best, and some casual play by him put us in danger. Lennon looked a bit out of his depth at times, but that's understandable. The referee, who lacked match experience, gave him a yellow card. Solly put in a shift as always and some of his approach work was good. At times he got himself into good unmarked positions, but his fellow players ignored him. Holmes-Dennis was competent.
Cousins had an awful match in my view, shared by those around me. Jackson was not very effective. Gudmundsson didn't have his best game and his free kick came off the wall. Lookman was sparking. Karel Fraeye got a chant of 'You don't what you're doing' when he was taken off, but he may have picked up a knock.
Vaz Te was involved, but not in a decisive way. Reza had a great game and is really growing into the league.
Makienok did contact the ball with his head a few times, but made little overall contribution.