MATCH REPORT | Walsall 2 Charlton Athletic 2

Here is our match report from Tuesday evening's Sky Bet League One clash between Walsall and visitors, Charlton Athletic.
Walsall were back in League One action on Tuesday evening as they took on Charlton Athletic at Banks's Stadium. We were in attendance and you can read our match report below.

Ricky Holmes gets the match underway, but it was Walsall who enjoyed the better start, winning a corner in the third minute thanks to a deflected Kieron Morris effort. Tonight's visitors, Charlton Athletic, cleared the resulting corner but only as far as Zeli Ismail who had worked his way into space on the edge of the box, but the midfielders effort sailed just wide of the far post.

Charlton won a corner themselves in the seventh minute, when a Jay Dasilva cross was nodded behind. Patrick Bauer headed the crossed ball down for Ricky Holmes, but the Addicks midfielders cross went behind without troubling Mark Gillespie in the Walsall goal. The hosts were soon back on the attack, with an eleventh minute run on goal from Tyler Roberts looking promising, but the ball appeared to get stuck under the young forwards foot momentarily, allowing Charlton to recover, Bauer blocking the eventual effort. The resulting corner saw a low shot from Joe Edwards deflect goal-wards, but Ben Amos was on hand to clear for the visitors.

With thirteen minutes on the clock, Charlton took a somewhat unlikely lead, when a long ball over the top fell to Tariqe Fosu who, with just a hint of offside, slotted the ball through the legs of a hapless Gillespie. Unfortunate for the Saddlers who had thus far been on top.

Buoyed by their goal, the Addicks continued to get forward, testing the Saddlers defences. In the sixteenth minute, Gillespie was again called into action, turning a thumping twenty five yard effort from Billy Clarke round the post. The resulting corner fell to Josh Magennis, who headed goal-wards, eliciting a superb save from Gillespie, who turned the ball onto his post to keep it out.

The visitors failed to capitalise on another opportunity to extend their lead twenty or so minutes in, when Fosu slipped a ball through for Holmes, but the midfielder fired high and wide. Moments later, Gillespie thwarted another Charlton challenge, gathering Bauer's incoming headed effort with ease. Gillespie was again on hand to keep his side within a goal of their opponents minutes later, holding well to deny Magennis a goal from twenty five yards.

As we reached the half hour mark, James Wilson became the first player to receive a caution, picking up a yellow card for a foul on Fosu. The resulting free kick, twenty or so yards out, was curled goal-wards by Holmes, but sailed harmlessly over the bar without troubling the man between the sticks.

After a good defensive spell from the Saddlers, the hosts finally got the ball back up to the other end with ten minutes of the half remaining, but Amos was on hand to parry a powerful, twenty five yard shot from Morris clear to keep his sides lead intact. Moments later, Amos was again called into action, coming off his line to claim from a Walsall corner.

Forty one minutes into the game, Roberts drew the sides level, poking his right leg out just enough to get a touch on a tantalising right-wing cross from Nicky Devlin, and turning the ball home at the near post.

During the one additional minute added by the officials, Zeli Ismail joined Wilson in the referee's notebook, receiving a caution for a foul on Holmes moments before the referee brought an end to the half, with the sides level at the break.


The sides remained unchanged as Walsall got the second half underway. The Saddlers won a free-kick early in the half, on the edge of the area. Erhun Oztumer fired a delightful effort goal-wards, but the ball sailed just wide of the mark. The hosts continued to press, with Morris crossing the ball in for Roberts in the fifty first minute, but the first-half goalscorers effort went wide.

The hosts continued to seek a second goal as the half continued, but forty four minutes in, an under-hit pass to Gillespie gave their opponents an opportunity to retake the lead. Fortunately for the Saddlers though, the Walsall shot-stopper made amends for the defensive mishap, getting out well to clear the danger.

With fifty seven minutes on the clock, the referee issued a third caution, booking Kashi for a foul on Luke Leahy.

The game became something of a midfield battle as both sides cancelled each other out as they sought an illusive second goal.  Sixty eight minutes in, Wilson almost found the breakthrough for the Saddlers from a free-kick, but his misjudged headed effort sailed wide of the post.

Walsall saw another missed chance in the seventieth minute, when Roberts broke free of his man before firing a powerful effort in on goal, but Amos was alert and able to clear. The Addicks then broke with the ball, setting Fosu through on goal, but Gillespie was on hand to deny him.

Charlton opted to make the first change to their line-up in the seventy second minute, introducing Karlan Ahearne-Grant in place of Billy Clarke. Two minutes later, the Saddlers made their first change, sending Maz Kouhyar into the fray in place of Zeli Ismail.

In the seventy seventh minute, the Walsall bench opted to make their second substitution, bringing on Daniel Agyei in place of goalscorer, Tyler Roberts.

The hosts got forward well following the change, heaping plenty of pressure on their opponents, though they were unable to find a breakthrough.

There was a brief pause in proceedings in the eighty fourth minute whilst Leahy received treatment following a collision with Amos. He was soon up and able to continue, but after bravely attempting to see out the game, the injury got the better of him and he was replaced in the eighty seventh minute by Shaun Donnellan.

With just two minutes remaining, Charlton got the ball to Holmes on the edge of the box and the midfielder fired a looping volley over Gillespie, into the net to put his side ahead.

The Saddlers needed just a minute to bring the tie level again, with Agyei picking up the ball twenty five yards out and curling a superb, left-footed effort into the top corner.

Four additional minutes were added at the end of a superb game of football, but neither side were able to capitalise and the match was brought to an end with both sides taking a point a-piece. Probably a fair result on a night when both sides enjoyed good spells in possession, creating some fantastic chances along the way.

T.Roberts (41'), Agyei (89') // Fosu-Henry (13'), Holmes (88')
ATT | 3,712 (263)
REF | C.Boyeson

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