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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 January 2006, 17:33 GMT
Tackling Skills with BBC Sport - Charlton v B'ham
Charlton's Thomas Myhre celebrates
Charlton's Thomas Myhre celebrates

BBC Sport continue their partnership with Foyer Federation to bring you the best sports reports from budding young journalists around the country.

Tackling Skills is a project that gives Foyer residents the chance to work with BBC sports journalists to help develop their literacy and communication skills by using sport to inspire, motivate and re-engage them.

Here are some of the reports from Charlton's 2-0 home win over Birmingham at the Valley.

By Shaun Buchanan

Alan Curbishley added his voice to the growing support for Darren Bent to receive England recognition after the Charlton striker delivered the coup de grace in injury time to give some respite from a dull but dogged performance.

Curbishley insisted: "Darren has to be in Sven's mind. He is a fantastic goalscorer and scores a variety of goals with his right and his left. He is good in the air and has hardly had a tap-in this season."

Both teams lined up 4-4-2, Birmingham to bolster a shot-shy attack and Charlton to stem the woeful run of results that they have suffered at home.

This couldn't deflect from Charlton's reliance on the 'dark arts' of the game, pumping the ball so high it came down with snow on it.

Working the channels they tried to pin back and disrupt Birmingham's sharp and crisp distribution but only succeeded in giving away the possession far too cheaply forcing them to defend for long periods.

After 12 minutes Jiri Jarosik volleyed over after a misdirected defensive header presented him with a difficult chance on his left foot, but he showed great technique, as it sailed just over the bar.

Jonathan Fortune and Muzzy Izzet

After much Birmingham possession Charlton had a succession of corners. Then Rommedahl crossed as Hughes ghosted in unmarked to head home on the half hour.

Charlton came out in the second half with renewed vigour but they were still unable to dominate the middle of the park, as Melchiot started to become more influential and Pennant showed more of his pace and trickery.

Birmingham became more direct in their approach, with Heskey and Sutton pressurising Hreidarsson and Kishishiev.

Heskey then missed a gilt-edged chance after good link-up play between Forsell and Sutton.

Forsell became very dangerous with his movement and quick feet causing the flat-footed Charlton defenders all kinds of problems.

The game's best move saw Ambrose receiving possession from Hreidarsson who then played a pass through to Bent who out-sprinted Mario Melchiot.

But as he steadied himself the angle looked too acute as Melchiot closed in to block the shot but Bent unleashed an unstoppable dipping drive over Maik Taylor.

The watch word for Birmingham is beware of the dreaded drop. Charlton's is must perform better!

By Maccabee Cummings

We all met up in Deptford at lunchtime as we had to be at the Valley for 1.30 pm - I was running late but got there anyway!

We got off the train and saw lots of people all going in the same direction towards the Valley. There were police, hotdog stalls, and other stalls selling hats, scarves and banners - it was like a mini Carnival.

I saw Paul from the BBC who told us we would be going through a different entrance for the press - I felt like someone had answered my prayers!

We walked into this large room and on the top floor there was a buffet, tea, coffee and other soft drinks - it was all free! I felt like a V.I.P!

We all followed Paul through some doors and I made my way through a little doorway into the stands and saw thousands of people all around me.

We made our way to our seats - they were perfect - I felt I had the best view. We also had a pull-over desk so we could write our notes down and a small screen TV which showed the match and action replays which I found very helpful!

Bryan Hughes celebrates his goal
Bryan Hughes sets Charlton on their way

So kick-off! Possession was fairly even. Charlton's Dennis Rommedahl made a run down the wing but held up the ball for too long when he should have passed.

Following a near miss from Jiri Jarosik, there was a corner to Charlton. Shaun Bartlett took it and Radostin Kishishev got a tap and forced the save from Mike Taylor.

Charlton then had another corner. Dennis Rommedahl took it and Bryan Hughes got his head to the ball to score the first goal.

Both teams started to look more sharp and were playing better football.

Birmingham fought back with some good opportunities, but Charlton had a very good defence. The whistle sounded for half time - it was an exciting first half.

Birmingham began to try very hard to chase the goal. There was a near miss for Jiri Jarosik, followed by Damien Johnson who wasted a good opportunity.

There were more corners and free-kicks on both sides of the pitch, but nobody was able to convert them to goals.

Luke Young made some good runs and Birmingham's Pennant gave Charlton's defence a hard time towards the end of the game.

Charlton cleared the ball sparking a race between Bent and Melchiot and Bent had the extra gear going in front. He took one touch and put the ball in the back of the net.

The crowd went wild as the second goal sealed Charlton's victory.

Straight away, we were rushed into the press conference where we waited for Steve Bruce, the Birmingham manager. He shook a few hands and sat down. Straight away questions were being asked:

"How do you think you performed today Steve?'" He replied: "I think the best team lost in honest truth. We are in the business of goals and we didn't get any."

A few more questions were asked and Steve Bruce seemed to handle the interview very well, he had a good rapport with the reporters. The press officer brought it all to a close.

All the reporters were frantically typing and getting their recorders ready for Alan Curbishley. Five minutes later he arrived.

For a manager of the winning team he didn't look much happier than Steve Bruce.

One reporter shouted out: "Alan how do you think you did?". He replied: "We got the result, we needed the three points. We realise we are in a battle and want to move up the table."

This was a great experience for me and I really enjoyed my day at the Valley.

Links to more Tackling Skills stories


Charlton Athletic show the way
10 Sep 04 |  Tackling Skills
Man Utd programme photos
10 Sep 04 |  Photo Galleries

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