Football Round-up: Charlton make a point;

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The Independent Online
If anyone has a tonic for crumbling nerves they could make a financial killing at this time of year among players, managers and fans alike. Charlton would be a very good place to set up shop. Alan Curbishley's fifth-placed side got a point after a 0-0 draw at struggling Reading where Bulgaria's captain, Bobby Mikhailov, made a several fine stops. Nice to know someone can save The Royals.

This was Charlton's fourth consecutive game without a goal but Curbishley accentuated the positive. "At least we created a couple of chances today," he said. "I thought we deserved to win. Maybe it's the Charlton way to keep everyone hanging on for as long as possible."

Ipswich need a potion too. They dropped out of the play-off places after a second defeat in four days. After a sound walloping at Tranmere they led in the sixth minute at Southend, and looked satisfied with a point after Keith Dublin equalised, but Mike Marsh unleashed a 25-yard scorcher to give the Shrimpers a 90th-minute winner.

As for Tranmere, John Aldridge remained unbeaten as player-manager after the drab 1-1 draw at Port Vale, while the prolific scoring form of West Brom's Richard Sneekes continued. His ninth goal in 10 games since arriving from Bolton put the Baggies 2-0 ahead at Norwich but thereafter Albion threw it away to allow the Canaries a point.

It has been a week for high-profile divorces and the First Division came closer to breaking its ties with both Luton Town and Watford when they drew 0-0 at Kenilworth Road. Millwall have been pulled back into the relegation mire after their 1-0 home defeat by Oldham. The Lions' Alex Rae was sent off for violent conduct. He was conducting it with the Latics' Chris Makin at the time, so he walked too.

In the Second Division, Wrexham have made a late surge into the final play-off place, their 5-0 thrashing of relegated Hull pushing aside Chesterfield who lost at Bradford. But the Welsh side has played more games than its rivals.

For Brighton fans probable relegation, despite a 1-0 win over Carlisle, has been compounded by the similarly probable loss of the Goldstone Ground. It finally got too much for them yesterday and dozens stormed the directors' box after the match, ripping up seats and smashing a glass door.

In Scotland, Falkirk were relegated from the First Division after losing 4-0 at Celtic. "Too many of our guys bottled it and that was the biggest disappointment for us," the caretaker manager Gerry Collins said, though whether he was talking about the match or the whole season is unclear. "There were some experienced pros who came into the dressing room laughing at the final whistle and that is simply not acceptable."

But better news from Brechin. They are promoted to the Second Division after beating Alloa.

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