Charlton Athletic 2 Middlesbrough 1

Last updated : 13 March 2006 By Footymad Previewer
With the controversy over his possible appointment as the new England manager engulfing him, Charlton Athletic boss Alan Curbishley was hoping that his team would enhance his credentials for the job with a good performance over Middlesbrough at The Valley.
His side achieved three points with a 2-1 victory but it was a far from impressive performance, the home side struggling for most of the match against a Boro side which showed nine changes from the team that beat AS Roma in the UEFA Cup first leg match in midweek.

It took two goals from Charlton's newest England international Darren Bent to get them the victory as he took his goals tally for the season to 19 and staked a claim for a World Cup spot in front of the England number two and Boro manager Steve McClaren.

The Boro boss must have been bitterly disappointed that his team failed to get anything out of the match that they dominated in the first half, but Charlton goalkeeper Thomas Myhre was in inspired form making three magnificent saves.

It took Charlton 25 minutes to even get a shot on target and but for their goalkeeper, they would have found themselves behind at half-time.

He tipped over Ray Parlour's goalbound effort and then made a great reaction stop from Massimo Maccarone.

That one effort from Charlton came from Darren Ambrose but was comfortably saved by Mark Schwarzer.

At the break, the Charlton boss made two substitutions with Jerome Thomas and Jason Euell replacing Bryan Hughes and Jay Bothroyd and it livened the home side up, and they eventually took the lead from the best piece of play they had produced.

Chris Powell got down the left and put in the perfect cross for Bent to place a firm header into the net. It was Charlton's first goal in 342 minutes of Premiership football, having previously drawn three matches all 0-0.

Mark Viduka, who loves scoring against Charlton for the various clubs he has played for, equalised with nine minutes left and looked to have gained Boro a deserved point.

However, some poor defending four minutes from time let in England international Luke Young whose low cross was missed by all the Boro defenders and Bent, lurking at the far post, scored with ease to give Charlton a victory which they barely deserved.

Charlton and Middlesbrough meet again at The Valley in ten days in an FA Cup sixth round tie.