Football: Charlton haunts old friends

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(First Edition)

SIMON CHARLTON, who began his career with Huddersfield Town, returned to Yorkshire to make key contributions at both ends as Southampton scraped a 1-0 victory over his old club in the first leg of their Coca-Cola Cup second round tie. 'We would have settled for 0-0,' he admitted.

The left-back, who joined Saints from his home-town club in the summer of 1993, cleared off the line after a Bruce Grobbelaar gaffe had handed Richard Logan a excellent chance to put the Second Division side. Then, with the game two minutes into injury time, Charlton popped up on the left flank to cross for Matthew Le Tissier to head his fifth goal of the season.

'We knew it wasn't going to be easy and Huddersfield made it hard for us, and although we wanted to play some football there were times when we had to just hump it clear,' Charlton said. 'To be honest, I didn't intend to put the cross where I did, but Tis came in near post.' Such is the England player's form in front of goal at the moment that Southampton's plan seems to be: if in doubt, look for Le Tissier.

'We've got to be the favourites now, and it was important that we came out with the right result,' Charlton added.

Huddersfield's manager, Neil Warnock, thought Southampton had deserved little for their defensive-minded display.

'At least at their place the crowd will be on their backs and expect a big win, so they'll have to try to do a bit more,' said Warnock, whose side created more than enough chances to have taken an advantage of their own into the second leg.

'I suppose that is taking a bit away from the way we played, because they could only perform as well as we let them and we did nothing wrong until we made the errors that gave them the goal.

'But that's the way it goes against a Premiership side. Le Tissier scored and there's nothing we can do about it, but it's not over and we'll have a go at them at their place.'