FA CUP REPORT | Charlton 0 West Bromwich Albion 1

A young Charlton side were eliminated from the Emirates FA Cup after losing 1-0 at home to an experienced West Bromwich Albion.

The Addicks put in a valiant display but despite some late pressure but were unable to cancel out a 32-minute goal from Kenneth Zohore.

With a squad ravaged by injuries Lee Bowyer made nine changes from the side that played Swansea City three days earlier including handing Charlton debuts to new signing Andre Green and academy graduates Aaron Henry and Abraham Odoh.

West Brom made 11 changes from their most recent Championship game but still had a vast amount of Premier League experience in their line-up including Ahmed Hegazi, Chris Brunt, Gareth Barry and Charlie Austin - seven Addicks weren't even born when Barry made his Premier League debut back in 1998.

The Addicks started with promise and Brendan Wiredu, who returned from his loan at Colchester United on Friday for the tie, drove a volley from outside the area a whisker past the post in just the second minute.

At the other end Rakeem Harper was first to strike at goal for West Brom but his shot was straight at Dillon Phillips forcing a routine save from the Charlton stopper. 

The game quietened down and it wasn’t until Jack Fitzwater shot wide from long distance just before the half hour mark that either side were really tested again.

Zohore put the Baggies in front in the 32nd minute when he played a lovely one-two with strike partner Charlie Austin before slotting home past the onrushing Phillips.

The visitors, spurred into action by the goal, kept pressing and Deji Oshilaja, who was brilliant throughout the first half, twice blocked efforts at goal. 

Despite not creating many clear cut chances other than the goal, the experienced Baggies were worth their 1-0 half-time lead.

A spirited Charlton started the second half better than they finished the first. Josh Davison headed at West Brom keeper Jonathan Bond from a Henry cross. Debutant Green then forced Bond into a difficult save with a powerful, low, left-footed shot from just outside the penalty area. 

At the other a Charlie Austin header was blocked wide, with the visitors appealing that an arm was used in the process and Chris Brunt smashed a left-footed shot just wide of goal.

With the Addicks still in the game Tomer Hemed and Jonny Williams were both brought into the action on their returns from time out of the sidelines with injury. 

Phillips was forced into a wonder save to deny Austin at point blank range after the former Southampton striker was quickest to react to an audacious Brunt chip bouncing back off the crossbar.

Austin himself was denied by the woodwork minutes later when his right-footed effort powered into the post and wide. 

Some late pressure from the Addicks gave the Charlton fans hope. Albie Morgan’s driven free kick to the back post had the West Brom defence scrambling and was blocked behind for a corner in the 88th minute.

Davison then struck the bar in stoppage time with a wonderful half volley on the turn and Hemed saw a dipping left-footed half-volley just clear the crossbar as the Baggies held on to qualify for the fourth round.

Charlton: Phillips; Solly (C), Oshilaja, Sarr, Stevenson; Wiredu (Williams 70), Heny (Morgan 60), Vennings; Green (Hemed 60), Davison, Odoh

Subs (not used): Harness, Gallagher, Pratley, Powell

Booked: Wiredu 70 (foul on O’Shea)

West Bromwich Albion: Bond, Zohore, Brunt (C), Townsend, Austin, Harper (Shotton 90+4), Barry, Edwards (Tulloch 90+3), Hegazi, O’Shea, Fitzwater

Subs (not used): Al-Habsi, Krovinovic, Willock, Soule, Richards

Booked: Harper 72 (foul on Odoh)

Goal: Zohore 32

Referee: D Webb

Attendance: 6,426 (1,982 from West Brom) 

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