Football / FA Cup: Charlton book date at Old Trafford

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The Independent Online
Charlton Athletic. . . . . . . . . . . . . .2

Bristol City . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

THEY HAVE already seen off the Premiership's second-in-command in the FA Cup and now Charlton have achieved every underdog's greatest wish: the opportunity to bring down the best. Before they meet in the quarter-finals, Manchester United will need to do their homework on Darren Pitcher, who put paid to Blackburn in the fourth round and scored the goal last night which sent his team off in the direction of Old Trafford.

It is Charlton's first appearance among the last eight since 1947, the year they won the trophy, and fully deserved it is, too, because they were always in charge. A desperate late scramble apart, they seldom looked in need of the second- goal insurance Kim Grant gave them in injury time.

They had finished the first game on top but this replay opened with City immediately declaring their intent with a series of passing combinations that promised a great deal more than they were ever able to achieve.

Their initial ascendancy was misleading. In between two ambitious efforts from Brian Tinnion, Carl Leaburn had been presented with an easier opportunity. He was not able to take advantage but the move suggested Charlton were beginning to assemble their own threat and as the game progressed the stronger they became.

Mark Robson was a lively threat down the flanks and his corner-kicks were always a discomfort for Keith Welch, who dropped his delivery from the right in the 35th minute and paid a heavy price. First on to the loose ball was Steve Brown and he was sent tumbling under the challenge of Wayne Allison. Pitcher's penalty was dispatched with power and style.

In the second half, Charlton braced themselves for an onslaught from the visitors but it never came, so tight a grip did their defenders exert over the Bristol strikers. Stuart Munro placed his volley just too high and Junior Bent came close but Charlton's superiority was emphasised when Grant latched on to Leaburn's pass and shot home via a deflection.

Charlton Athletic (4-4-2): Vaughan; Brown, Chapple, Balmer, Minto; Robson, Pardew, Pitcher, Nelson; Grant, Leaburn. Substitutes not used: Garland, Sturgess, Bolder (gk).

Bristol City (4-4-2): Welch; Munro, Shail (Rosenior, h-t), Bryant, Scott; Bent, Edwards, Martin, Tinnion; Robinson, Allison. Substitutes not used: Pennyfather, Leaning (gk).

Referee: V Callow (Solihull).

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