Priskin pushes Charlton to brink

Charlton Athletic 2 Watford 3

Charlton Athletic fans who bemoaned the mid-table security that Alan Curbishley once brought them in the Premier League can at least begin to contemplate the possibility of being front-runners in a division once more. Unfortunately, barring results between now and 3 May of the sort not seen at The Valley this season, it will be in League One, the third tier of English football, where they have not been since 1981.

Phil Parkinson's side lost, when they needed to win and although they finished the day as they started it, 12 points off safety and at the foot of the Championship, the problem is not only that gap.

Three of the Addicks' next five games are against teams looking for automatic promotion: Reading, Wolves and Birmingham. The end of March could see Charlton's second relegation in three seasons.

The problems were obvious all over the pitch, from the way they were picked open for Watford's first, well-worked goal, scored by Don Cowie after 17 minutes, to their lack of ball-winners and players adept at distributing in midfield.

Four minutes later the hosts at least responded as if the relegation penny had suddenly dropped. Tresor Kandol ran on to Deon Burton's pass and skipped around the goalkeeper, Scott Loach. Then from a corner taken by Matt Spring 12 minutes later Watford gave Kandol, on loan from Leeds, plenty of time to head past Loach.

The visitors lost Tommy Smith to injury just before the interval. In his place came Grzegorz Rasiak who showed he is not a spent force at this level. After 56 minutes, Jobi McAnuff crossed and Rasiak, just outside the penalty area, controlled the ball with one touch and volleyed into the top corner. "A world-class finish," enthused Brendan Rodgers, the Watford manager. Watford secured victory through Tamas Priskin's winner seven minutes from time, as he chipped the advancing Rob Elliot.

A key result also went against Charlton, as Blackpool beat Norwich, although matters fell out of their own hands a long time ago. Parkinson said: "I felt that fighting spirit was lacking." League One beckons.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
techYahoo Japan launches service to delete your files and email your relatives when you die
Life and Style
Child's play: letting young people roam outdoors directly contradicts the current climate
lifeHow much independence should children have?
Arts and Entertainment
Tycoons' text: Warren Buffett and Bill Gates both cite John Brookes' 'Business Adventures' as their favourite book
booksFind out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
<p><strong>2008</strong></p>
<p>Troubled actor Robert Downey Jr cements his comeback from drug problems by bagging the lead role in Iron Man. Two further films follow</p>
filmRobert Downey Jr named Hollywood's highest paid actor for second year running
Life and Style
Dale Bolinger arranged to meet the girl via a fetish website
life
Property
Sign here, please: Magna Carta Island
propertyYours for a cool £4m
Caption competition
Caption competition

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor