Charlton Athletic headed to Roots Hall stadium on New Years Eve, and was able to secure a point in the closing stages of the game, thanks to a volley from Andrew Crofts which was smashed against the underside of the cross bar, and ricocheted over the line.
The game did not start well for the Addicks, with the Shrimpers holding the ball for long periods, and applying pressure, which eventually led to a goal being fired past Dillon Phillips midway through the first half, by Simon Cox.
The first half a rather dire experience for the boys in red, and the fans which had traveled to support them. Their problems arising as a result of the Addicks being unable to meet second balls, and progress as a unit down the field. However, in the second half, Charlton Athletic came out a different side, with the likes of Karl Ahearne-Grant and Jordan Botaka holding the ball for longer periods, and adding composure to the side which Joe Aribo had fostered in the first half alone.
In front of over 1,800 travelling fans, and a Roots Hall stadium at almost full capacity (10,000+), it was Charlton who had the first attempt on goal. Nicky Ajose launched a left footed volley from 18 yards out directly at Ted Smith. However, the Shrimpers then dispatched a counter attack, with Stephen McLaughlin driving a strong long-range effort just inches wide of the left post.
Few minutes later, Charlton were back pressing in the opponent’s box, with Magennis driving a low ball effort towards goal, but it was smartly retrieved by Smith. This was followed by the first goal being scored in the 24th minute by Simon Cox, who collected his third goal in two games.
The ball fell to the potent striker, who had some space, and was able to compose himself within Charlton’s penalty area, before barraging a half volley into the back of the net.
Moments later, Joe Aribo had a low effort pushed wide of the left post by Smith, but the Shrimpers had one more chance before the break to make it 2-0, when Anthony Wordsworth’s rising effort was tipped wide, impressively, by Phillips.
The start of the second half saw the Addicks bite back, as Jorge Teixeira’s volley forced Smith to tip over the shot from close range. Southend responded at the other end of the pitch, with McLaughlin sending a right footed effort against the post, after cutting in from the left.
The Addicks beginning to find their way in this game, Ezri Konsa pelted a powerful 20 yard effort directly at the goal, forcing Smith to once again make another finger-tip save. The young goal keeper was then forced to step-up again for the Shrimpers in the 69th minute, as Smith done extremely well to keep out a rising effort from substitute, Jordan Botaka.
The visitors continuing to apply ample pressure on Southend’s back five. Joe Aribo had a curling left footed effort clip the opponent’s crossbar, before Phil Brown replaced Nile Range for Simon Cox in the 73rd minute.
In the 80th minute, McLaughlin forced his manager to make another substitution, as he was no longer able to continue. Their number 17, being replaced with Jermaine McGlashan.
Moments later, McGlashan setup Will Atkinson who saw his effort tipped over by the young Charlton stopper, before Fortune was unable to capitalise on a close range opportunity, by bundling the ball wide of the left post.
As a result of Southend United not being ruthless enough in the early stages of the game, and Charlton now finding themselves in this game, continuing to knock on the door for a goal, it was only a matter of time before the Shrimpers felt disappointment. In the 89th minute, Andrew Crofts stepped up to volley Konsa’s right wing cross. A deserving point for both Charlton and Southend.
The home team found themselves in this game in the early stages, as they were extremely dominant in possession and in creating chances. However, it seems that the Blues started to become complacent in the second half, and it was clear that the boys in red had a passionate and straight talk at half time from Manager Robinson, as when Charlton appeared from the tunnel for the second half, they were ready to fight back.
The likes of Karl Ahearne-Grant and Jordan Botaka coming on in the second half, to support an excellent starting debut performance from Joe Aribo changed the tide of the game for Charlton and allowed them to salvage a point. Dillon Phillips also made a notable and admirable performance.
Southend’s goal keeper achieved man of the match, and despite all the odds against an injury riddled Charlton side (7 injuries in total), the Addicks showed real fight and spirit in the second half, which paid off in the closing stages.
The weak midfield, in terms of advanced playmaking and attacking intent, is still causing issues for Charlton when pressing forward, but is an area that Robinson is set to address in the January transfer window.
A fan spoke to the recently appointed manager before the game, who asked him about his trip to Belgium and his plans for the January transfer window. Robinson responded that he was very positive and pleased about his trip to see the “President”, and is planning on bringing in 6 new additions to the squad.
A comparison of where Charlton currently stand in the league this season after 24 league games, compared to previous campaigns in SkyBet League One, can be found below:
2016/2017: 12th (32pts)
2011/2012: 1st (54pts)
2010/2011: 7th (38pts)
2009/2010: 2nd (48pts)