March 16, 2013
Easter springs Lions into life
Jermaine Easter scored with his first touch and Shane Lowry hit a screamer as FA Cup semi-finalists Millwall stopped the rot in the npower Championship with a 2-0 win over Charlton.
Easter, signed on loan from Crystal Palace 48 hours earlier, came on as a 57th-minute substitute and within 60 seconds had fired the Lions ahead.
And defender Lowry made it an unhappy Valley for Charlton again when he rifled in a stunning 35-yard free-kick six minutes later.
Millwall this week secured a Wembley meeting with Wigan next month after sinking Blackburn in their quarter-final replay.
But they have taken their eye off the ball in the league since embarking on their cup run, losing seven of their last eight matches.
However, they returned to the day job in style to secure a valuable three points while condemning their south London rivals to a ninth home defeat of the season.
Millwall created the best of the few chances in the first half, with former Charlton loanee Dany N'Guessan firing an early effort wide.
Another ex-Addick, Rob Hulse, then saw his cross-shot blocked into the path of Liam Trotter but the midfielder's volley missed the target.
Charlton's Bradley Pritchard blazed an early opportunity over and then forced David Forde into a save with a shot which dipped in front of the Lions goalkeeper, who gathered it at the second attempt.
Forde also won a race to the ball with Danny Haynes as the striker burst through, and then tipped a fierce Callum Harriott drive wide.
On the stroke of half-time Millwall's Chris Taylor held the ball up well at the far post and teed up Adam Smith but the defender, on for the injured Karleigh Osborne, poked wide from 10 yards.
Lawrie Wilson had a shot deflected over Forde's crossbar just after the break before Lions boss Kenny Jackett made his inspired substitution.
Easter, who scored on his Millwall debut during a previous loan spell in 2008, repeated the trick when he latched onto a clever through-ball from another new signing, Richard Chaplow, and flicked it under the advancing David Button.
It got worse for Charlton in the 64th minute when Pritchard fouled Smith some 35 yards out and Lowry curled a superb, dipping free-kick past a stunned Button for a memorable first goal of the season.
Charlton attempted to hit back and Yann Kermorgant headed over the top before substitute Ricardo Fuller was denied by Forde, but Wembley-bound Millwall held firm to ease their fears of being dragged into the relegation scrap.
|27 David Button||1 David Forde|
|5 Michael Morrison||2 Alan Dunne|
|16 Rhoys Wiggins||3 Dan Shittu|
|6 Matthew Taylor||21 Jack Smith|
|20 Chris Solly||27 Karleigh Osborne|
|4 Johnnie Jackson||12 Shane Lowry|
|23 Lawrie Wilson||32 Richard Chaplow|
|14 Bradley Pritchard||19 Chris Taylor|
|32 Callum Harriotts||6 Liam Trotter|
|9 Danny Haynes||22 Dany N'Guessan|
|18 Yann Kermorgant||7 Robert Hulse|
|1 Ben Hamer||Maik Taylor 33|
|44 Dorian Dervite||Adam Smith 25|
|3 Cedric Evina||Nadjim Abdou 26|
|8 Dale Stephens||Martyn Woolford 18|
|11 Scott Wagstaff||George Saville 29|
|19 Ricardo Fuller||Jermaine Easter 31|
|26 Jonathan Obika||Andrew Keogh 20|
|Ricardo Fuller for Danny Haynes (67)||Adam Smith for Karleigh Osborne (17)|
|Scott Wagstaff for Lawrie Wilson (67)||Jermaine Easter for Dany N'Guessan (57)|
|Nadjim Abdou for Richard Chaplow (72)|
|Bradley Pritchard (64)||Adam Smith (44)|
|Alan Dunne (47)|
|· Squads: Charlton Athletic | Millwall|