CHARLTON have the advantage heading back to South London on Friday night after beating Doncaster 2-1 at the Keepmoat Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
A quick fire double from Lyle Taylor and Joe Aribo had Charlton in control. They had their chances to make it 3-0 or even 4-0 in the second half but a late goal from Matty Blair means that the tie is poised heading into Friday’s second leg.
Lee Bowyer named an unchanged starting lineup form the one that started the 4-0 win over Rochdale on the final day of the League One season. There was a return to the bench for former Crystal Palace man Jonny Williams.
It was a nervy start to the game as both sides looked to prevent each other getting an advantage. Doncaster had the better of the opening stages with the evergreen James Coppinger going close. It would be him again to go close, this time forcing Phillips into a full stretch save.
Then came the visitors first chance. Ben Purrington did really well to get his cross over to Josh Parker and he should have opened his Charlton account but somehow headed wide. Really poor effort.
Moments later the hosts struck the upright. Patrick Bauer was booked for bringing down John Marquis and Danny Andrew took the free kick from around 30 yards, struck it sweetly but saw it cannon off the bar. They would live to regret that.
Just two minutes later Charlton took the lead, Ben Purrington’s cross was kept in by Josh Cullen at the back post, he then put the ball back into the six yard box and Lyle Taylor got the final touch to give the visitors the lead.
They weren’t done there, Taylor again involved this time found Joe Aribo, who then aimed a ball into the box that caught out Doncaster keeper Marosi and suddenly the Londoners had a two goal lead and full control of the tie.
Charlton could have had a third before the break but Cullen’s shot was tipped over by Marosi.
Half Time: Doncaster 0-2 Charlton
Doncaster started the second half on the front foot and forced an early corner that was cleared by Nabby Sarr. Another corner would cause problems in the Charlton defence. Josh Cullen was forced to clear off the line after a deflection sent the ball towards goal.
Kane then went close for Doncaster but his shot went wide. Moments later, Andrew had another chance from a free-kick. His shot deflected off the wall and out for a corner.
After 69 minutes Charlton had another chance for 3-0, this time Purrington curled an effort towards goal but Marosi caught and held well.
Charlton again came close ten minutes later, Lyle Taylor crossed for Josh Cullen who’s header was saved at full strength by Marosi.
Lyle Taylor nearly made it 3-0, a cross from Aribo was just headed away from Taylor before he could make contact with it.
Doncaster then gave themselves hope and kept the tie alive. a deflected cross into the box caused problems in the Charlton defence and Blair bundled the ball over the line to give Doncaster hope going to the Valley on Friday.