Charlton Athletic 2 - Brentford 0.
Despite the title, Brentford most certainly were not the cannon fodder the final score might suggest.
Charlton Athletic, as a club and business, should be applauded for making sure the fixture went ahead, even after what seemed to be a fairly serious electrical fault in the Upper North Stand.
Perhaps, for maybe the first time, we are fortunate not to be filling the Valley at present as it gave space for people to move to.
If the problem had happened in the Premiership or Championship days, perhaps the game may have had to be postponed?
The game kicked off 15 minutes late and Brentford set about the home side with gusto.
Charlton seemed to be slow out of the traps and Brentford looked quite dangerous when going forward.
The first half belonged to the Bees.
They were sharper and more incisive, stroking the ball around midfield.
Luckily, they were also pretty toothless up front.
Against the run of play, Michael Morrison bravely scored with a diving header to beat the keeper, Lee to the ball.
A long throw ended up with Brentford's defence all over the place.
I don't know what Lee was doing but it most certainly wasn't keeping goal!
He'll be really disappointed when he sits back to review his performance.
Despite going behind, Brentford kept plugging away but didn't manage to grab anything their dominance deserved.
At half time we felt quite lucky to be 1-0 up.
The second half was completely different.
The crowd woke up a bit.
Charlton had obviously been given some 'encouragement' from Chris Powell and seemed quicker and more lively.
Huge swathes of the North stand found themselves forcibly on the move.
What didn't change was the appalling East stand linesman who had obviously enjoyed a really good Christmas.
He was so portly he found it difficult to keep up with play and made some absolute howlers.
I'm surprised he didn't come back after half time with Mince Pie crumbs down the front of his shirt.
Or maybe he did?
Another thing that didn't change was the treatment being handed out to BWP.
Despite his recent lack of scoring, Brentford targeted him as a danger man and tried to clobber him at every opportunity.
I lost count of how many times he was kicked off the ball or received an overly hard challenge.
The ref wasn't interested of course. He was only interested in the really important things like the ball hitting an arm.
Both Solly and Cort received yellow cards for ball to hands and Wiggins received one for supposedly time wasting as he approached the ball to take a free kick.
Brentford managed to exit the pitch without a single caution.
Charlton swept forward again and again but it looked as if we were only going to get to cheer a single goal.
Johnnie Jackson hit the post with a bullet header and other promising chances came to nothing.
New signing Clarke had a decent effort, only to be saved by Lee and the rebound was skied by the returning Wagstaff.
It became very uncomfortable in the final 5 minutes as Brentford had a second wind.
They really could have annoyed the majority of those present when a really good chance was skewed wide.
Instead, as is often the way, Green managed to put the icing on the cake when he kept his cool and slotted the ball past a stranded Lee.
2-0 and game over.
As one fellow teacher had bet on Morrison to score first and for a final score of 2-0, for the first time ever I was willing Charlton to take it easy rather than go for a killer 3rd!
Green managed to go very nearly half a season without scoring and now he's managed to strike gold in both of his latest starts.
BWP is surely deserving of a goal due to his tireless running. It'll come Bradley, don't despair!
A Casual Rating
I'm giving Lacoste polo shirts to Chris 'Quality' Solly, Michael Morrison and Yann Kermorgant for being star performers today and another to Danny Green for his first goal (as an Addick!) at The Valley.
Well done chaps.
Brentford only brought around 1000 supporters with them but they attempted to get behind their team with some success.
There weren't many of them but they seemed keen to have a shout.
Our crowd were very slow to get started and only really came alive in the second half.
Perhaps those of us who were at Leyton Orient less than 48 hours ago somewhat over did it and were still recovering?
Mr G. Scott and friends, here's your prize.
So, still top of the league and due to Sheffield United fluffing their chance today, we have extended the lead to 5 points.
I'm warming to 2012.