Football: Pringle pounces to sink Dons

Charlton Athletic 2 Wimbledon 0

IT WAS not exactly vintage Liverpool, but after John Barnes had signed up for the good fight against relegation yesterday, he was able to sit and watch his new club record a first victory since October 24, 15 long matches ago. It took Charlton above Southampton at the bottom of the Premiership and if Barnes brings them more of this sort of good fortune, starting against his old club on Saturday they might go higher yet.

Their spirit has never been in question and last night Wimbledon, needing a win themselves to hit the heights of sixth place in the table, seemed taken aback to meet a team battling and chasing as hard as they traditionally do. As in the FA Cup tie at Tottenham last week, Wimbledon did not play well, and, eventually coming under some pressure in defence, found the ball bouncing against them.

Dean Blackwell thought he had cleared the danger eight minutes before half-time, only for the Swedish striker Martin Pringle to bustle on and score, and Blackwell's comical own goal 23 minutes into the second half brought back at least some of the optimism that Charlton had felt in the late summer.

Barnes's brief run as a substitute against them on the opening day of the season was the last time he appeared for Newcastle. At 35, it will be his passing rather than his pace that they look to now, but the Charlton manager, Alan Curbishley, has also been keen to bring in players not touched by the inevitable depression of three and a half months without a victory. "Just having John walk into the building last week gave everyone a lift," Curbishley said.

Not such a huge lift as Pringle's goal, however. Running from the half- way line, he seemed to have been halted by Blackwell, only for a bounce off Chris Perry's toe to give the Swede the opportunity to drive in his second goal in three starts since joining on loan from Benfica. Even that went through the goalkeeper's legs.

On a very different sort of occasion from their last home game, against Manchester United, Charlton were clearly edgy in a poor first half, but Wimbledon could take no more advantage than a strong header wide by John Hartson from Neil Ardley's cross. It was Hartson's only contribution and Wimbledon's only threatening effort.

They were undone, and condemned to another dressing-room dressing-down from Joe Kinnear, in the 68th minute. After Neil Sullivan had to throw himself left to hold a hold a header by Steve Brown, who had another fine game in the home defence, Chris Powell's angled cross should have been collected by the goalkeeper. Instead, he all but collided with Blackwell, the ball bouncing off the defender and rolling almost apologetically over the line.

"We are staying up," was heard from the home supporters for the first time in weeks as their side clawed to within four points of Everton and Coventry. As at White Hart Lane, Kinnear did not visit the press room to make his views known. "I think they're having a tear-up," said Curbishley, which appears to be manager-speak for a little chat about how matters might be improved.

Charlton Athletic (4-4-2): Royce; Mills, Brown, Tiler, Konchesky; Robinson (Newton, 70), Kinsella, Redfearn, Powell; Hunt, Pringle. Substitutes not used: Ilic (gk), K Jones, Bright, Barness.

Wimbledon (4-4-2): Sullivan; Cunningham, Perry, Blackwell, Thatcher; Ardley, Roberts, Kennedy, Euell (Goodman, 85); Hartson, Cort (C Hughes, 61). Substitutes not used: Heald (gk), Kimble,Castledine.

Referee: D Elleray (Harrow).

News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
News
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistant - Accounts Payable - St. Albans

£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...

Ashdown Group: Treasury Assistant - Accounts Assistant - London, Old Street

£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

Recruitment Genius: Installation and Service / Security Engineer

£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...

Recruitment Genius: Service Charge Accounts Assistant

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions