Saturday 4 May 2019

Charlton finish 3rd

Before the match we were calculating all sorts of permutations about the play offs, thinking that the most likely outcome was 4th or 5th. In the end a dominant performance saw a 4-0 win over Rochdale to produce a 3rd place finish and a semi-final against Doncaster. Hopefully, Charlton have come into form at the right time and enter the play offs with momentum. However, sagacious supremo Lee Bowyer has warned that good results against Donny in the season will count for nothing in the play offs: Cautious Bowyer

Lee Bowyer hopes to have Igor Vetokele back from injury for the play offs, just as well given another less impressive performance by Parker: Vetokele

At the end of the game the players came on to the pitch to accept the plaudits of the crowd, the star being Lyle Taylor's nephew who scored at both ends of the pitch. Lee Bowyer made an inspiring talk thanking the fans.

Joe Aribo, Calvin Andrew's own goal, Lyle Taylor and Krystian Bielik did the damage and results elsewhere meant the Addicks climbed from fifth.

Aribo and Taylor each squandered two early opportunities apiece for the hosts before the breakthrough arrived in the 19th minute. Taylor burst through on goal and was denied by Dale keeper Josh Lillis, only for the loose ball to be teed up by Josh Parker for Aribo to fire home a curling shot. It was a good strike from the increasingly impressive player.

Dillon Phillips had to be alert to tip over Callum Camps' 25-yard effort, but it was the Addicks who doubled their advantage after 32 minutes. Taylor whipped in a cross from the right which the visiting defence failed to deal with and the unfortunate Andrew ended up putting the ball into his own net. At first the goal was attributed to Purrington, but he did not celebrate it so I could not deploy 'The Cat uses his claws' headline.

Taylor put the outcome beyond doubt five minutes before the break by latching on to Albie Morgan's excellent pass (he had a good game throughout) and slotting past Lillis. The roles were reversed in the second half when Taylor turned provider only for Morgan to fire into the side-netting. Moments later Parker fired wide from six yards with the goal at his mercy after Lillis had parried out Taylor's drive.

But Charlton's second-half dominance was rewarded 15 minutes from time as the impressive Bielik drilled in the fourth after exchanging passes with Morgan. Taylor was withdrawn a few minutes before the end, allowing the referee to shake his hand and pat him on the back.

The report from Louis Mendez is here: Final day stroll

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