Two first-half goals from Matty Blair and Taylor Perry were enough to give Cheltenham Town a 2-1 victory against Charlton Athletic on Saturday afternoon at The Valley.
Cheltenham took the lead here, despite Craig MacGillivray’s best efforts to keep things scoreless in the opening stages.
Charlton had an opening with Elliot Lee firing over but it was the Robins who got the first goal, as Matty Blair fired under the Addicks’ no.1 after the stopper had done well to parry an initial effort.
That certainly sent a bit of a shock around SE7 and worse was to come for home supporters, and much to the delight of those in the away end.
Just after the half-hour mark, a well-worked move down the right-hand side was finished off nicely by Taylor Perry. It was good build-up play and certainly a sign of who was in the ascendancy in this first half, with the Addicks unable to really put together consistent pressure and chances.
Indeed, Charlton’s support let their team know exactly what they thought of the first 45 as the players came off; boos ringing around the ground on the interval.
A response was needed from the Addicks, then, and early on after the break they almost got it – Diallang Jaiyesimi firing wide when laid off by Jonathan Leko – the latter, on at the break, would have plenty more say in this second half.
Up the other end, MacGillivray was still needed at his very best – doing wonderfully well to get down to Callum Wright’s powerful header and bat it away – that could have been the game there and then had it gone in.
2-0 it remained, though, and soon after Charlton had halved the deficit via that man Leko.
The attacker spoke of having unfinished business following on from his first stint at the Addicks a couple of seasons ago, and he looks keen to come good on such words.
A fine ball into the box from Albie Morgan was plucked out of the air by Conor Washington, who duly set Leko up for a cool finish past Scott Flinders.
The game was nicely poised for the final half-hour, then, and it was Cheltenham with the next big chance – Wright was left free at a corner at the far post but he could not direct his header home; a real let off for the hosts.
In the end, though, it didn’t matter for the visitors who managed to keep Charlton at bay for the closing stages, taking home a huge three points back to Gloucester.