Saturday, 31 January 2015

Charlton Athletic 1 v Rotherham United 1

Well we managed to score a goal but also managed our 15th draw of the season and, frankly, it was no less than the visitors deserved.

Guy Luzon sent his team out pretty much as I expected, although I was disappointed Tony Watt didn't start and once again we had to suffer Calum Harriott playing as a striker alongside Igor Vetokele. Dmitrovic started in goal and I was immediately disappointed that he "doesn't look like a goalie." He's smaller than half the side in front of him, but he had a decent game and made a superb reflex save to maintain our lead before finally being beaten. He has a decent goal-kick but needs to learn not to launch it straight to his opposite number which he did on several occasions.

The back four, were as expected, with Wiggins, Bikey, Ben Haim and Solly. Veljkovic and Buyens anchored central midfield with Cousins on the left and Gudmundsson on the right. We started well enough and there was plenty of endeavour but Rotherham matched us and the defences dominated. In fact, there were only two clear-cut chances in the first-half with right wingers from both sides managing to shoot across goal beating the keeper and both seeing their efforts come off the inside of the post. Conor Newton managed it for the Millers after six minutes and Gudmundsson did the same mid-way through the half. 

After the break we upped the ante but were struggling to get anything to stick with Harriott or Vetokele. The Covered End were calling for Tony Watt before he was brought on but Luzon managed to upset them and many more by taking Igor off and leaving Harriott on. Gudmundsson was having a fine match and seemed to want it more than anyone else. He was eager to shoot and desperate to win the ball when not in possession. It was a move involving him which saw Tony Watt played in and he produced a sublime piece of skill to lose two markers and make a yard for himself but he fell at the last moment. 

Rotherham were beginning to attack and when Andy Hammill was brought on by Steve Evans I feared they might nick it. I was delighted then when we finally managed to break the deadlock. It was another fast attack with good support from Watt and Lepoint. An effort from Gudmundsson was blocked and fell for Jordan Cousin who couldn't miss from six yards. The relief was palpable but Rotherham stormed forward and an equaliser looked on the cards. 

Rotherham had, had a good penalty appeal for handball turned down and a goal disallowed for offside before Green saw Dmitrovic make that goal-line reflex save from his thumping header. Hammill had fizzed a curling shot inched wide before pumping a ball deep into the box that Danny Ward was first to and fired home from close range.

Guy Luzon will probably be satisfied with another point and some heart shown throughout the side. Solly was peerless as usual and Bikey and Ben Haim largely back on song. I thought Veljkovic was very economical although he played very much as a sweeper. Tony Watt must start games and I though Christophe Lepoint looked useful when he came on, even if it will take him a bit of time to get accustomed to the pace of the Championship. Three points would have taken us back to 12th but we didn't get them and there were lots of points picked up below us, most notably by the Lions who won 1-0 at Nottingham Forest. It's promising to get very messy.

On a final note, it was the lowest home gate for a Saturday game (14,447) and the second lowest all season.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Must have been at a different game we were total cack,Keepers kicking was appalling,Lepoint was useless when he came on lost the ball in dangerous positions as I remember,players goal celebration totally flat which makes me think all is not well,Luzon up and down his box either like a whores drawers or a Subbuteo Goalie of old,we were lucky it was only Rotherham we were playing because I think if it was anyone else we would have been slaughtered.
I am usually an optimist by the way

Dave said...

Did I saw it was a good game?