Charlton cruised to victory in their first Papa John’s Trophy Group G clash, brushing Crawley Town aside at The Valley on Tuesday evening.
Three first-half goals courtesy of Josh Davison, Corey Blackett-Taylor and Elliot Lee saw the hosts take a three-goal lead into the break, before an own goal, a debut strike from Mason Burstow and a second Davison goal rounded up a six-star performance under the lights in SE7.
Nigel Adkins made wholesale changes to his side for the cup tie, handing a debut to U23 stopper Nathan Harness, while Lee and Blackett-Taylor were handed full debuts.
It took just five minutes for the Addicks to open the scoring with Davison bagging his first of the season, turning neatly in the box before tucking his shot into the bottom left-hand corner.
The hosts dominated the early exchanges and it was 2-0 before the 20-minute mark. Blackett-Taylor opened his account for his new club on his first start, weaving into the box before seeing the ball fall kindly for him to smash home.
Nigel Adkins’ men were running rampant and there would be another full-debutant goal courtesy of Lee who bagged the third with a fine solo effort – bringing down George Dobson’s long ball forward, he put it through the legs of a Crawley defender and dispatched an excellent left-footed shot across the keeper and into the far corner.
Sean Clare had a glorious opportunity to make it four on 36 minutes, but could only head wide from close range, while Charles Clayden clipped the top of the crossbar with an effort from Blackett-Taylor’s cross.
The Addicks’ dominance continued after the break and it was four nine minutes after the restart. A lightning-quick counter attack resulted in Davison fizzing a ball across the six-yard which was ultimately turned in by Crawlry skipper George Francombe for an own-goal.
The 62nd minute saw the visitors come close when Jack Powell rattled the crossbar with a decent free-kick and in the 74th minute they were presented with an opportunity to pull a goal back via the penalty spot after Jason Pearce was adjudged to have pushed Sam Ashford in the box. Sub Kwesi Appiah stepped up and made no mistake, sending Harness the wrong way.
There was still time for yet another magic moment for a debutant with Burstow emerging from the bench with 10 minutes remaining and bagging a goal with his first touch less than two minutes later.
Good work from Clayden down the right saw the winger clip in a cross for the waiting academy forward who adjusted brilliantly to stoop and send a header into the back of the net.
Davison put the cap on things in the 90th minute. Burstow was involved again, driving forward brilliantly before laying off Davison who rifled home his second and his side’s sixth of the evening.
Charlton: Harness, Barker, Elerewe, Pearce, Roddy, Blackett-Taylor (Kirk 64), Dobson, Clare (Dempsey 64), Clayden, Lee (Burstow 80), Davison.
Subs (not used): MacGillivray, Famewo, Morgan.
Booked: Pearce 61 (foul)
Goals: Davison 5, 90, Blackett-Taylor 18, Lee 22, Francombe (og) 54, Burstow 82.
Crawley Town: Nna Noukeu, Gallacher (Hessenthaler 46), Francomb, Craig, Dallison (Frost 13), Powell, Nadesan (Appiah 56), Tilley, Ashford, Tsaroulla, Payne.
Subs (not used): Morris, Ransom, Al-Hussaini, Khaleel.
Goal: Appiah (pen) 75
Att: 1,404 (167 from Crawley)
Referee: Neil Hair
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