The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Tom Knight

CHARL­TON head coach Guy Lu­zon was left purring over his troops’ sec­ond-half per­for­mance against Read­ing, adamant the score­line at The Val­ley should have been far more com­fort­able for the home fans.

Af­ter a quiet open­ing pe­riod Pavel Po­greb­nyak put the away side in front on the stroke of half­time with a fine turn and fin­ish.

But Charl­ton scored three times af­ter the break, twice through Yoni Buyens with Simon Church grab­bing the other, with the away side, down to ten men af­ter the dis­missal of Danny Wil­liams, get­ting a late con­so­la­tion with Po­greb­nyak’s sec­ond.

And Lu­zon was thrilled with the turn­around, prais­ing the men­tal­ity of his play­ers as they made it seven wins in their last nine.

He said:“I think we started the game very well. In the first 20 to 25 min­utes we moved the ball well but we were not ef­fi­cient enough in find­ing that fi­nal ball.

“I told them at half-time that we needed to go back to how we started the game and that fi­nal ball would come in the end.

“I thought the sec­ond half was bril­liant be­cause we played great foot­ball.

“We scored three goals but we could have scored three or four more.

“For me it is not only im­por­tant that we win but the way that we play is also im­por­tant.

“We have to en­joy the game and play with a smile on our faces and I think we did that well.

“The whole club is happy and if we con­tinue to play like this we will keep win­ning and more Charl­ton fans will come to the games.”

Read­ing were the first side to pro­duce a sus­tained spell of pres­sure and got their re­ward in the 40th minute when Jor­dan Obita’s scuffed shot from the edge of the area was well con­trolled on the turn by Po­greb­nyak, the Rus­sian mak­ing no mis­take from six yards out.

Charl­ton started the sec­ond-half on fire and got the equaliser when Read­ing cen­tre-back Michael Hec­tor clearly han­dled a deep cross un­der-pres­sure with Buyens scor­ing his sev­enth spot­kick of the sea­son.

The home side con­tin­ued to pile for­ward and added two more goals in a ram­pant sec­ond-half per­for­mance.

First Buyens scored his sec­ond of the game, for­tu­itously guiding Joe Gomez’s low cross into the top cor­ner via his knee, be­fore Church scored against his old club, tap­ping home from a yard out af­ter good work from Tony Watt.

Read­ing were com­pletely out­played in the sec­ond half and things got worse when they went down to ten men af­ter Wil­liams was sent off for an off the ball in­ci­dent. They did get a late con­so­la­tion through Po­greb­nyak, but Charl­ton fully de­served the three points that keeps them 11th in the ta­ble.

Read­ing manager Steve Clarke said: “Our sec­ond half per­for­mance was just not good enough so that is very dis­ap­point­ing.

“In the first half I thought we per­formed very well but the dif­fer­ence be­tween the first half and the sec­ond half was in­cred­i­ble, re­ally.

“It was symp­to­matic of the sea­son that we have had and also symp­to­matic of the way we have re­sponded to ad­ver­sity in games and it is not too dif­fi­cult for peo­ple to see why we are where we are in the league.

“We need to work out how you can do so well in the first half and have so much con­trol within a game but then come out and have ab­so­lutely no re­ac­tion to them equal­is­ing in the sec­ond half.

“It is some­thing that is re­ally frus­trat­ing and the sooner this league cam­paign is over and the sooner we are safe in the di­vi­sion then the sooner we can try to start again.”

PIC­TURE: Me­dia Im­age Ltd

HAIR-RAIS­ING: Simon Church, left, takes the praise af­ter scor­ing Charl­ton’s third and, inset,Yoni Buyens sends Adam Fed­erici the wrong way from the spot

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