It hardly qualified as the start of a new era, but Charlton secured a solid 2-0 win over Port Vale at The Valley this afternoon in front of what must have been then smallest crowd this season. The attendance was officially 8,992, but there were far fewer than that in the ground and the streets were eerily quiet afterwards. Both goals came in the first half and Port Vale pressed more in the second half while a potential third Charlton goal was ruled offside.
The Addicks took the lead in the 30th minute through a superb Josh Magennis header, with the Northern Ireland international finding the far corner from Morgan Fox's first rate cross. Charlton - with caretaker boss Kevin Nugent overseeing proceedings - doubled their advantage a minute before half-time, as Fox's pass found Nicky Ajose who beat the offside trap and slotted the ball past Jak Alnwick in the Port Vale goal.
Andrew Crofts almost put the result beyond doubt five minutes after the break when his 20-yard dipping volley went inches over the crossbar. The visitors, as expected, came out after the break searching for a goal back but Nathan Smith's flicked effort that evaded Declan Rudd's goal was the closest Bruno Ribeiro's side came to scoring.
The referee was the worst I have seen at The Valley for some time. He failed to see things that others saw and saw things that no else did. The follically challenged official booked Lookman after a Vale player fell over which they were prone to do.
Charlton are now 14th in the table. However, that is just four points off a play off place and they are eighth in the form table.
Football League Paper player ratings
Rudd,6; Foley, 7; Bauer, 6; Pearce, 6; Fox, 8 (star man of match); Lookman, 7; Crofts, 7; Ulvestad, 6; Jackson, 6 (Botaka, 7); Magennis, 7 (Hanlan, 6); Ajose, 8.