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Charlton attacking midfielder Jonny Williams has made his long-awaited return to the first-team fold after overcoming his injury to feature from the bench during the Addicks’ FA Cup tie with West Brom.
The South London side suffered a 1-0 defeat to the Baggies in game courtesy of Kenneth Zohore’s first-half effort, but the return of Williams from the bench in the 70th minute was a clear highlight of the match for Charlton supporters.
Williams had not featured for Lee Bowyer’s side since suffering a knee injury during the 3-0 win over Derby back in October, but his outing against Albion suggests he has now fully recovered from this injury and is back in contention for the Addicks.
The Welshman is just one of a large number of Charlton players who have suffered from injury problems in recent weeks, with Bowyer having to lean heavily on academy players in order to fill out the match-day squads of late.
However, Williams has now joined previous long-term absentee Lyle Taylor in making his comeback for Bowyer’s side, and it has to be said that there are few Charlton players who have been missed as much as the 26-year-old.
The Wales international had been a regular feature in Bowyer’s side prior to his injury, with the midfielder playing a role in all 12 Charlton matches until this point, and his absence left a glaring hole in the Addicks’ midfield towards the end of 2019.
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Charlton only managed won once in their 14 matches without Williams, and it would be hard to argue that the midfielder’s injury did not play a major role in this, with Bowyer’s side severely missing the creativity and ball-carrying ability that Williams brings.
There were so many matches during Williams’ absence where Charlton simply lacked the ability to unlock opponents’ defences with that final pass, and this is something Williams is often able to provide with his invention from attacking midfield.
The fact Williams is now back fit in time for the second half of the season should now give Charlton a significant boost, and his impact on the team was notable during his brief cameo appearance against West Brom where he reminded fans of his quality.
It is important Charlton are sensible in their management of Williams’ return to the first team, but the London side should be looking to insert the midfielder into the side as soon as possible in order to boost their survival chances this term.