CHARLTON 1 SCUNTHORPE UTD 1
Scunthorpe came to the Valley in hope more than expectation. The Charlton fans were delighted that the newly promoted Iron were the first visitors and 3 points were therefore in the bag. I didn't see it like that. A reconstructed Addicks side showed signs that we will be a force to be reckoned with but without the team understanding and fluidity that will hopefully come with time. Make no mistake though, Charlton should have buried a poor Scunthorpe side who will struggle at this level. Great spirit and an ability to get away with niggly and persistent fouling in defence certainly help them earn a point.
Marcus Bent had a good game by his normal standards and was a bit unlucky not to score in the first half. Scunny's keeper had an excellent game and made a few outstanding saves but even he was well beaten as Andy Reid crashed an effort against the bar via a slight deflection. Charlton took the lead through Bent after the ball rebounded to him all on his own 8 yards out. The ball flew into the roof of the covered end net as a strangely incompetent linesman stood to signal offside. Referee Kettle soon corrected the ridiculous decision and confirmed the goal.
The Iron equalised as the new boys won a corner on the right and having lost his marker completely (Bent?)the Richard Rufus lookalike in the 5 shirt was jubilantly crashed a header past the former figure of fun, Nicky Weaver, into the back of the net.
Referee Kettle was by now losing the plot along with both linesmen giving baffling decisions and allowing time wasting in abundance. The 5 minutes added was frugal seeing as the Scunthorpe goalkeeper lay in 'agony' for that long alone without anything else being added.
I predicted a defeat today so I suppose a point is better than I thought. I am only expecting mid table come May but there were signs as I say, that we could mount a challenge for the top flight places.