REPORT | Charlton 2 Oxford United 0

A virtuoso performance from Andrew Shinnie helped a clinical Charlton to a fourth successive win despite playing more than 25 minutes with 10 men against Oxford United.

The midfielder assisted Conor Washington's opening goal and scored the Addicks' second as Charlton beat the Us 2-0 at The Valley.

The Addicks defended bravely as a team and were able to make it a fifth clean sheet in a row despite Ryan Inniss being sent-off in the 66th minute for his second bookable offence.

Lee Bowyer made four changes from the side that beat Northampton Town on Saturday switching the formation between 4-3-3 and 4-4-2 during the game.

It was a slow start, as both teams sussed each other out and Ben Amos was the first goalkeeper called into action, when he palmed down a Josh Ruffels free-kick and gathered at the second attempt.

Anthony Forde then drove over for the visitors after running more than half the length of the pitch.

While Oxford had more possession and attempts in the opening half, the Charlton defence kept the away side relatively quiet and it was Bowyer’s team who were the most clinical.

Charlton took a 32nd minute lead from a clever throw-in routine. Chris Gunter threw short to Ben Watson and got the ball back before curling a pass into the feet of Shinnie. The midfielder turned away from his defender cleverly and played a smart through ball for Washington. The Northern Ireland international made no mistake, sliding under Oxford stopper Simon Eastwood for his third goal of the season.

It was 2-0 in stoppage time at the end of the first half and it is a goal Eastwood won’t want to see back. Shinnie’s free kick from the left wing had power but the goalkeeper, likely anticipating the ball would go over the wall, was beaten by a shot that wasn’t too far from him.

Chartlon felt they should have had a penalty at the start of the second half when Paul Smyth went down under Oxford pressure in the box but referee Craig Hicks gave a free kick the other way. 

Ian Maatsen then shot wide with a difficult volley from a Charlton corner, as the game began to open up, and Smyth saw a cross from the right give Eastwood a scare.

The Addicks were reduced to 10-men when Innis was dismissed in the 66th minute for his second foul in five minutes. Referee Hicks adjudged both fouls were bookable offences and the centre-half was given his marching orders.

Shortly after the sending off James Henry had a golden chance to pull a goal back for the Us but skied over the bar from inside the penalty area. 

Amos was forced into action with 13 minutes to go but kept out from Matty Taylor and Mark Sykes' follow-up was blocked away. 

Omar Bogle did well to get the Addicks a free kick high up the pitch but smashed the resulting set-piece straight into the wall. 

A brilliant run by Maatsen nearly created a counter attack chance for Ben Purrington as the game entered its final stages, while at the other end Daniel Aygei headed over a difficult chance.

Charlton were able to see out the game for a fourth win in row for Thomas Sandgaard's side.

The Addicks travel to Portsmouth on Saturday but will be without the suspended Innis and Ben Watson, who picked up a fifth yellow card of the season.

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Charlton: Amos; Gunter, Inniss, Famewo, Maatsen; Pratley (C), Watson, Shinnie; Washington (Forster-Caskey 90+2), Bogle (Purrington 82), Smyth

Subs (not used): Maynard-Brewer, Williams, Levitt, Maddison, Aneke

Goals: Washington 32, Shinnie 45+1

Booked: Watson 46 (foul on Sykes), Innis 61 (foul on Eastwood), Gunter 72 (foul on Aygei)

Sent-off: Innis 66 (second bookable offense, foul on Taylor) 

Oxford United: Eastwood, Clare, Ruffels, Moore, Gorrin (Kelly 63), Taylor, Sykes, Long, Forde (Hall 79(, Henry (C), Shodipo (Agyei 63)

Subs (not used): Stevens, Mousinho, Cooper, Elechi

Booked: Gorrin 24 (foul on Washington), 

Referee: C Hicks

Attendance: 0 (behind closed doors)

Read Time: 4 mins