Charlton Athletic (Home)
FA Cup Third Round

Sunday 09th January 2011

Although still in the play-off places in League One, Charlton Athletic have been having a bad time of late.  Their last win was the 3-1 victory against Luton Town in the last round of the FA Cup and their last league win was back in November (although their league programme has been hit by the weather).  Their last league games have seen them lose two and draw four.  This has lead to manager Phil Parkinson being sacked this week by the board, who have been installed with the club being taken over earlier in January.  However, their intended replacement - Dennis Wise - is said to not want to take over until the summer and therefore, they are left in limbo for the time being.

Hopeful of getting out of League One, the team is currently seventh in the table, but teams behind them have a game in hand that, if won, could take the Addicks out of the play-off zone.

They have compiled an experienced squad at the Valley, but some players are beyond their sell by date, with other younger players not yet having the required experience to see them through a tough division.

In defender Christian Dailly they have a veteran centre half, who, alongside Gary Doherty, well known to Spurs fans, provide a well tried and tested pairing, but who lack the pace to deal with the pace of top class strikers.  It will be interesting to see how Charlton try to stop the pace in the Spurs side, should those quick players be selected.  Jonathan Fortune has returned to the club and is another older defender, who is not as quick as he once was, leaving the younger legs of former Southend United full back Simon Francis to do some of their running.  Behind them they have Rob Elliott in goal, who I don't know much about, other than he has had quite a bit of picking the ball out of the back of his net to do lately.

At times, Johnnie Jackson has been put in the back four at full back and he is the team's top scorer with 11 this season ... albeit with a number of them from the penalty spot.  His left foot was always his best, but sometimes didn't get put to it's full use and after playing for a couple of seasons at Colchester United, he has now settled at the Valley.  A creator as well as a scorer, Jackson can be a player who needs to be paid attention to, but his lack of pace often let him down and was probably the reason he failed to make it at Tottenham.

Also available in midfield are Alan McCormack, Lee Martin, Therry Racon, Kyel Reid, Jose Semedo.  McCormack is a hard working Irishman, who gets tackles in and likes to get forward, but might struggle to get back if found too far up-field, while Martin is a younger, quicker with nimble feet and is a wide player, who has already faced Spurs once this season, in the Spurs XI friendly at Ipswich Town, where he is currently on loan from.  Whether he will be recalled now Roy Keane has been sacked or whether his loan will not allow him to play in the FA Cup, he can be a threat wide on the left mainly or the right, as he has the ability to switch wings, although he is a little light-weight, being a skinny blond midfielder.  Reid is a talented player, but one who lacks a little in keeping his position and can wander, leaving gaps that are exploitable.  He is more attacking than defending in his midfield duties, which might not help his aside's cause but that is where Racon comes in as a hard-man in midfield, who covers a lot of ground and shores up the space just in front of the back four.  Semedo has a similar role, but the former Portuguese Under-21 international has been playing at a higher level in Serie A with Cagliari, where he might have picked up some of his less subtle habits.

Paul Benson will be missing after getting sent off against Colchester recently and that leaves the Addicks short of fire-power up front.  Young talent Scott Wagstaff has attracted the attention of a number of bigger clubs, while Pawel Abbott has been  around the lower league scene with Huddersfield Town, Bury, Preston North End, Oldham Athletic and Swansea City, but never really went on to develop the potential that was identified in him as a young man.  Tall and strong on the ball, he knows where the goal is and can score out of the blue, so he will need to be closely marked.  Former Port Vale and Sheffield Wednesday striker Akpo Sodje has been an infrequent scorer in most seasons of his career, but is another forward who is direct and can cause problems with his presence.

Being two divisions and a bit down from Spurs, it should be a straightforward task for Tottenham, but as we have seen in the past this is not always the case.  Last season saw Tottenham progress against Peterborough United with a professional performance and a repeat of that would be nice ...

PREDICTION : -  Tottenham Hotspur    4      Charlton Athletic    0

For more information on the opponents and their history, including full result history of matches between the two teams, click here.


TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR : -  Ledley King (out - groin); Tom Huddlestone (out - ankle); Jamie O'Hara (out - back); Jonathan Woodgate (out - groin); Younes Kaboul (out - suspended 3rd of 3); Carlo Cudicini (out - shoulder); Gareth Bale (out - back); - (-); - (-); 

CHARLTON ATHLETIC :  -  Paul Benson (suspended - one of three matches); - (-); - (-); 


FA Cup Highlights  (ITV1) - Sunday 23.00 - 24.00 (highlights)  Also available online.
For coverage in all parts of the world, check here and here

Radio :  
BBC LONDON 94.9FM (London area only), Digital Radio (London area only) &  Sky Channel 0152
 (live coverage)
BBC Radio Five Live (live coverage)  606/939 MW

If available on BBC radio, it can supposedly be heard in these countries on these stations ...
Australia (Melbourne) SEN  -  116 AM  Live Transmissions: TWI, Saturday. 12.45 & 1500 matches
Australia (Sydney)  Radio 2  -  1611AM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 12.45 Match
Singapore Media Corp Radio  -  93.8 FM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
South Africa  SABC (Radio 2000)  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
Uganda  Radio 1 (English) 90.0 FM, Radio 2 (Lugandan) 87.9 FM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
North America (USA, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean)  Sirius Satellite Radio  Live transmission: Saturday - 12.45, 15.00 (TWI) & 17.15 (BBC) Sunday - 14.00 & 16.05 (BBC) Mon, Tue, Wed - Various times (BBC)

Internet :
www.spurs.co.uk   Live webcast  - subscribers only
BBC London - http://www.bbc.co.uk/london/content/articles/2005/10/12/live_commentaries_feature.shtml
click on link to "Listen to Tottenham Hotspur live commentary" on top right hand menu.


Tottenham Hotspur   3    Charlton Athletic   0      (Half-time score : -)

Premier League
Venue : White Hart Lane  
Sunday 09th January 2011
Kick Off :  1.30 p.m.
Crowd :   35,698
Referee :  Michael Oliver (Northumberland)
Spurs kicked off and played towards the Park Lane end in the first half.
Weather :  -   Bright, chilly
Teams : - 
Tottenham Hotspur :

23  Cudicini

22  Corluka
20  Dawson (c)
19  Bassong
32  Assou-Ekotto

31  Townsend 
12  Palacios  (14  Modric 46)
30  Sandro       
21  Kranjcar

  9  Pavlyuchenko

Unused subs: 
  2  Hutton
11  van der Vaart
  8  Jenas
  7  Lennon

Charlton Athletic :

  1  Elliott

  2  Francis
  5  Doherty
36  Dailly (c)

16  McCormack  (11  Reid 61)
  4  Jackson
  6  Semedo
  8  Racon
  7  Wagstaff

23  Ansinyah  (14  A. Sodje 70)

Unused subs: 
25  Warner
  5  Llera
24  Fortune
34  Jenkinson
  9  Abbott

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of http://www.colours-of-football.com)
Tottenham Hotspur

  Charlton Athletic
Scorers : -  
Tottenham Hotspur

Townsend 49
Defoe 58
Defoe 60

Charlton Athletic


Cards : -  
Tottenham Hotspur  

Sandro (persistent fouling) 63  


Charlton Athletic



Match Report : -  
While debut scorer Andros Townsend and two-goal Jermain Defoe should take the headlines after this functional 3-0 win for Spurs over Charlton Athletic in the FA Cup Third Round, it is surely Luka Modric, who will once more take the plaudits for a stunning display which turned the match with a fifteen minute spell of spell-binding play that won the match for Tottenham.

The little Croatian magician weaved his spell and his way through the red shirted defence of the South London visitors to make the chances that took Spurs through to a meeting at Craven Cottage with Fulham, but also created a number of other chances that could have racked up a large score-line in Tottenham's favour.  However, Carlo Cudicini made three good saves to preserve a clean sheet.

Harry Redknapp had made a number of changes to the side that finished at Everton, with Rafael van der Vaart, Jermaine Jenas, Alan Hutton, Luka Modric and Aaron Lennon all on the bench.  In came Vedran Corluka, Sandro, Andros Townsend, Niko Kranjcar and Roman Pavlyuchenko to face the League One side, who had just lost their manager Phil Parkinson.

It was an indication of the early kick-off and the extreme searching procedures put in place that there was a subdued start to the game with the empty seats gradually being filled, as the queues outside held up people getting in and the noisy Addick fans set out to enjoy their day out.  The fact that there were few songs coming from the Spurs sections was about all they had to sing about, as the mixture of hardy regulars and those who don't often come to the Lane sat down to experience the less than Inter Milan quality opposition.  The presence of Johnnie Jackson and Gary Doherty reminded us of Christmases past and a potential star of Christmas future soon made an impact on the game.

Fresh back from his loan at Ipswich Town, Andros Townsend was working the right wing with the step-over or five thrown in for good measure, as he gave West Ham loanee Matt Fry a roasting fit for any given Sunday.  With a minute gone, he beat his man for what was to be the first of many times and put in a low ball across the penalty area, but there was not a white shirt on hand to make something of it. 

Spurs were not playing with great fluency, but managed to pout Charlton under pressure form the start with Townsend almost getting on the end of a dropped Defoe free-kick which had been deflected up off the wall and from another free-kick in the 13th minute, Kranjcar curled a shot feet wide of the goal from 22 yards.  However, the visitors were trying to make inroads into the Tottenham box, with Simon Francis going on one long run, which left Kranjcar trailing behind him, but his ball into the box was intercepted by Dawson.  Wagstaff appealed for a penalty, when he ran at Assou-Ekotto and ended up on the floor, then Ayinsah made a good move on the right wing to cut inside and reach the edge of the area before deciding to let go a shot.  Unfortunately, his standing foot slipped and it touched the ball thus making his left foot striker the ball a mile wide.  It was a move which was meant to look very skilful, but ended up looking hilarious.

In between the two Charlton efforts came a Pavlyuchenko shot that keeper Elliott palmed out, but Defoe couldn't get to it to have a shot, so pulled it back for Wilson Palacios, who hit it wide off the leg of a defender.   When Townsend played the ball to Pav to set up Defoe, he looked as if he was about to score, until Christian Dailly, the veteran West Ham defender got in the way.  Racon tried a volley from about 28 yards out, but it did not cause Cudicini much trouble and then a low ball into the box from Wagstaff produced a bit of pinball and in the end Dawson had to clear it out of harm's way.  With 10 minutes to half-time, Jackson got some space on the left side and he created a chance with a low ball in for Wagstaff once more, but the striker could not get his try on target, despite some histrionics claiming a corner.

While not being in the thick of the action, Pav had a header that went over the angle from Andros' header back across goal and this had followed a chance when a cross from Sandro was flicked on by JD's head and the Russian was beyond the far post on the left to hit a volley that Elliott did well to beat out. 

As the whistle went for half-time, it signalled the end of a poor half of football, with Charlton showing a lot of effort, but no real direction, while Spurs had a few chances, but no real cutting edge.  The ref called Dawson to him as they left the field and probably told him that Sandro would be in the book for his next foul after getting away with a few ... although none were malicious.  The appearance of Gary Mabbutt with his daughters during the interval to talk about FA Cup success of the past was a nice touch.  The other good bit about half-time, was Clive Allen coming out of the tunnel to call Luka Modric into the dressing room.

And the Croatian appeared in place of Palacios after the interval.  His introduction produced an immediate effect, as he was happy picking up the bal land running at the opposition's midfield with it.  His movement and short passing made the tempo of the game higher and gave Charlton problems both picking him up and keeping up with the forward momentum that was built up.  Four minutes in, Sandro played a ball forward to Townsend centrally and he stepped inside to unleash an early right footed shot that skipped low off the turf and beat Elliott's dive to hit the bottom right hand corner of the keeper's net in the 49th minute.  it was a fantastic moment for the young winger and one which he deserved for his performance.

At 1-0, the game was not yet won, but when Fry strode forward and struck a 30 yard shot that had some power, Cudicini could take no chances and dived to his left to push it wide of the goal as it travelled a long way through the air.  Then it was Elliott who was saving, from Pavlyuchenko when he hit a shot from a tight angle, which the Charlton goalie did well to keep out, although he had no chance when Corluka and Modric worked some space on the right hand corner of their box and Modric was played inside to take the ball past Dailly and then hurriedly shoot.  Unfortunately for Tottenham, what would have been a great goal ended with the ball going past the upright as Modric cut into the six yard box.

Then ten minutes after the turnaround, Defoe managed to get a shot away, but it was a bit of a toe-poke after he was played in by Kranjcar, but the ball missed by a foot or so.  But it was merely delaying the inevitable, as in the 58th minute, he took Kranjcar's touch on, ran across the penalty box from left to right and as Doherty and Dailly tried to close him, hit a left foot shot that wrong-footed the keeper and nestled the ball in the same corner as Townsend's goal.  And before Charlton could settle, it was 3-0 with a goal two minutes later.  The little striker got the ball near the centre circle and ran at the heart of the penalty area, with defenders expecting him to release it to a team-mate, but the striker had the taste for goal now and hit a shot that was blocked by a defender's leg and with the keeper diving to cover it, he was not able to get up quickly enough to react to Defoe's shot from the rebound and the ball was soon in the back of the Charlton net again.

Fifteen minutes into the second half and Spurs were on their way to the Fourth Round, thanks to the spark added to the engine room by Modric.  Sandro was soon in the book for an innocuous challenge, but one he had bee warned about, before Townsend zipped away from Fry again and put the bal on a plate for Modric, but the shot that resulted was blocked away by a lunge from Doherty.  Everyone wanted to get in on the act and Benny popped up on the right side of the area and let go a low drilled effort from 25 yards that hit the advertising boards with some venom, just missing the goal, but then the next effort produced a two fisted punched save from Cudicini, as substitute Kyel Reid struck a drive from 28 yards that looked like it might sneak past the Italian.  However, he got enough on it with an unorthodox save to concede the corner.

Townsend was enjoying his afternoon and after beating Fry, his cross picked out Pavlyuchenko's chest and he took the ball down for Modric to hit a shot, but with a defender right in front of him, he could not get a clean hit on it.  Then the compliment was returned with Modric playing Townsend in for a shot that sneaked across goal and missed the far post by inches in the 79th minute.

A flowing move across the pitch involving the three Croatians opened up a chance for Corluka to knock a low ball into the six yard box and a scramble occurred, but the ball was cleared away.  When Semedo brought a ball out, he pushed it a little to far ahead of him as he reached the centre circle and he went full length, face first into the turf and stayed there for a while ... probably hoping no-one would see his embarrassment. 

Spurs had been awarded a number of free-kick son the edge of the box, with Kranjcar taking most of them, but had not got one on target, so with two minutes left, Benny took on just right of centre and he forced Elliott to a full-length diving save to palm the ball out.  Then, with three minutes of injury time being indicated, Charlton almost got a consolation, with Sodje turning Bassong in the box and hitting a fierce shot that Cudicini could only push aside.  With a corner coming in during added time, the Ginger Pele got his head to it first and it took a sharp reflex save from the Spurs keeper to knock it out and keep a clean sheet for the team for the third time in four games.

The visiting supporters had sung their incomprehensible songs and saw their team have a few chances, but the difference on the two teams in the end was clinical finishing and someone like Modric to create things.  Townsend had a promising debut, but needs experience at the top level and might benefit form a loan spell at a Premier League club like Walker.  It was a useful exercise in that several fringe players got a run out and that is important should they ne required in the coming weeks.  And Spurs move through to a game against Fulham away in the next round.  Momentum is important and winning becomes a good habit to pick up.

With Manchester United at the Lane next Sunday, it looks as though Spurs might not have David Beckham for the match, but with only six subs on the bench today, perhaps they are starting to believe they can win games when not at full strength.

Mickey Jenkins 


Fan Reaction : -



Have you ever noticed how often the three Croatian players pass the ball between themselves ?  Quite often, there will be a little triangle of Corluka, Modric and Kranjcar knocking the ball about to each other or if they have the ball, it will invariably be passed to one of the others.

They haven't had much chance this season, as they have rarely all played at the same time, but today they were back to their old system and it was Luka who made al the difference when he came on at half-time.

Spurs had been labouring without him and his incisive runs and little passes got Tottenham ticking to take the game to Charlton, who had looked solid without looking too dangerous.

In the end, it was comfortable and gave Spurs a fairly easy passage to the next round.  It was good to see Townsend given the opportunity to have a game and his confidence shone through, with his tackle on former Spur Johnnie Jackson and then a drag-back nutmeg on him.  His crossing looked good, as friends who had seen him on loan at Orient and Ipswich had told me that his final ball was not always great.  On the whole today, he looked like he could be a useful player to have around and certainly made more of an impact than you could imagine Bentley having.

So on to play Fulham away next.  Not the most exciting of opponents, but a game that should be winnable, but who knows who might be in the team by then !

Grant Spencer






Other Third Round scores this weekend :
Arsenal 1 Leeds United 1 Saturday
Blackburn Rovers 1 Queens Park Rangers 0 Saturday
Bristol City 0 Sheffield Wednesday 3 Saturday
Bolton Wanderers 2 York City 0 Saturday
Brighton & Hove Albion 3 Portsmouth 1 Saturday
Burnley 4 Port Vale 2 Saturday
Burton Albion 2 Middlesbrough 1 Saturday
Coventry City 2 Crystal Palace 1 Saturday
Doncaster Rovers 2 Wolverhampton Wanderers 2 Saturday
Fulham 6 Peterborough United 2 Saturday
Huddersfield Town 2 Dover Athletic 0 Saturday
Hull City 2 Wigan Athletic 3 Saturday
Millwall 1 Birmingham City 4 Saturday
Norwich City 0 Leyton Orient 1 Saturday
Preston North End 1 Notts. Forest 2 Saturday
Reading 1 West Bromwich Albion 0 Saturday
Scunthorpe United 1 Everton 5 Saturday
Sheffield United 1 Aston Villa 3 Saturday
Southampton 2 Blackpool 0 Saturday
Stevenage 3 Newcastle United 1 Saturday
Stoke City 1 Cardiff City 1 Saturday
Sunderland 1 Notts. County 2 Saturday
Swansea City 4 Colchester United 0 Saturday
Torquay United 1 Carlisle United 0 Saturday
West Ham United 2 Barnsley 0 Saturday
Watford 4 Hartlepool United 1 Saturday
Chelsea 7 Ipswich Town 0 Sunday
Leicester City 2 Manchester City 2 Sunday
Manchester United 1 Liverpool 0 Sunday
Crawley Town 2 Derby County 1 Monday
Wycombe Wanderers 0 Hereford United 1 Tuesday
One Second Round score from this weekend :
Lincoln City 3 Hereford United 4 Saturday


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