Notts Forest 0-1 Charlton Athletic
Notts Forest 0-1 Charlton Athletic

Charlton stunned their hosts – as well as their own  fans – at the City Ground on Tuesday evening.

The margin of victory may only have been 1-0 but this was no smash and grab raid, Lee Bowyer’s team were better than their opponents from the first minute to the last.

The performance was in stark contrast to their abject showing at Stoke on Saturday. It warmed up the travelling fans on a bitterlly cold night by the Trent.

The decisive goal came midway through the first-half. Cult hero  Naby Sarr – playing on the left of three central defenders – won the ball on the touchline in front of the dug outs.

He advanced a few strides before curling an amazing ball into Lyle Taylor, who expertly steered it home at the far post.

Though Forest had their moments, Dillon Phillips was never really tested.

Their fans knew it was not going to be their night long before the end, and streamed out in their masses.

It was a near sell out in the home stands – the official attendance was 28,029, but the Addicks ensured they had precious little to shout about.

Every player put in a shift but a special mention to Tomer Hemed who had his best game for the club, and little Erhun Oztumer who had his best game since dazzling the same opposition at The Valley.

With Barnsley losing and Wigan drawing, the Addicks opened up a six point gap with the bottom three.

A packed Valley will hope ‎to see a similar performance against Blackburn on Saturday.

Here is what a jubilant Bowyer had to say after the game:

“Saturday after the Stoke defeat I said – that won’t happen again. I know the group I have and that wasn’t like us but tonight was the way we can play.

“From start to finish we were better than them, they created the odd chance here and there but they’re a good side. 

“Not many teams have taken four points from Forest this season, let alone come here and got three. It should have been more, we should have won by more.

“We’ve been in every game away from home except the weekend just gone. We’re now three points nearer to the target of staying up that we need. 

“People wrote us off and said we’ll go down, but I believe in this group of players and they keep fighting and I keep pushing them. 

“With our fans behind us, we’ve got a good group here.”

Charlton‎ Phillips; Matthews, Lockyer, Pearce, Sarr, Doighty (Purrington 60);  Davis, Oztumer (McGeady 59), Cullen, Doughty;  Hemed (Smith 73), Taylor.‎

Subs (Not Used): Amos, Oshilaja, Aneke, Bonne.‎

Goals: Taylor 24‎.

Booked:‎ Davis 21 (foul ), Cullen 66 (foul), Smith (timewasting) Phillips 90(timewasting).

Nottingham Forest: Samba; Jenkinson, Figueiredo, Worral, Bong (Cash 59); Watson, Yates (Da Costa 69), Lolley, Silva (Semedo 59); Diakhaby, Walker. 

Subs (Not Used): Muric, Carvalho, Dawson, Mighten‎.

Booked: Diakhaby 47 (timewasting), Da Costa (foul ).‎‎

Referee: Darren Bond‎ (Lancashire).

Attn: 28,029 (805 Charlton)‎.