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17:04 24th March 2012


Jordan Rhodes took his seasonally tally to 35 with a 15th minute penalty to secure Town a vital three points against League leaders Charlton Athletic.

Town started well and deserved to go in front when Rhodes slotted home from 12 yards after Darel Russell had tripped Gary Roberts.

Charlton struggled to create any clear cut chances throughout the 90 minutes and were made to play the final half an hour with ten men after Russell saw red for kicking out at Antony Kay.

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Diego Arismendi became the first ever Uruguayan to wear the famous blue and white stripes of Town as Simon Grayson made just one change from the team that beat Chesterfield on Tuesday night, for the visit of League leaders Charlton.

As a result, Joey Gudjonsson dropped to the bench and was joined by the returning Calum Woods who missed the midweek game with a groin injury.

Town started the game well and produced the first shot when Danny Ward received Lee Novak's deft touch, but dragged his left-footed shot tamely wide of Ben Hamer's goal.

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Charlton themselves started confidently and their best chance in the opening ten minutes fell to Michael Morrison, but he could only manage to flick Danny Hollands' cross harmlessly wide of Alex Smithies' goal.

The visitors' stopper Ben Hamer was called into action in the 11th minute to deny Jordan Rhodes' powerful header from Gary Roberts' cross as Town continued their good start.

GOAL - Jordan Rhodes broke Town's post-war record of number of goals scored in one season when he slotted home his 35th goal of the season from the penalty spot in the 15th minute. Rhodes was involved in the build up to the move that saw Gary Roberts entice Darel Russell into a foul just inside the Addicks' penalty area. The League 1 Player of the Year stepped up confidently and sent Hamer the wrong way to give Town an early lead.

Lee Novak and Michael Morrison exchanged headers following Town's opener before Roberts showed quick feet to beat his man on the edge of the area, but curled well over with his weaker right foot.

The half lacked any really goal mouth action, with much of the action being played in the middle of the park. As a result, Town's Uruguayan Arismendi saw a lot of the ball and looked calm and composed alongside the aggressive and tenacious Antony Kay.


The visitors had the better of the opening exchanges in the second-half and after Tom Clarke had initially defended well, Chris Solly found Hollands who blasted high into the Charlton faithful from 18 yards out.

RED CARD - Darel Russell received his marching orders in the 57th minute when he kicked out at Antony Kay following the midfielder's late tackle.

BOOKINGS - Antony Kay was booked for the tackle on Russell as was Lee Novak who pushed Russell in the melee that followed.

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SUB - Chris Powell reacted immediately and brought on central midfielder Dale Stephens who replaced winger Dany N'Guessan. The Addicks changed formation and tucked Scott Wagstaff in, to form a midfield trio with Hollands and Stephens.

Tom Clarke, who was playing out of position at left-back, was having a good game and, using his stronger right-foot, found Rhodes on the edge of the box in the 64th minute. The striker showed good strength to hold off the attentions of Morrison and found Ward who fired well, but straight at Hamer from 20 yards.

Smithies was called upon to make his first save of the second 45 in the 66th minute when Leon Cort, who had won everything in his own penalty area, climbed above Sean Morrison from a long throw-in and forced Town's 'keeper to tip over.

SUBS - Simon Grayson made two changes with twenty minutes of the game remaining. Alan Lee came on at the expense of Gary Roberts and Antony Kay made way for Joey Gudjonsson.

Despite Town's man advantage they were still finding it difficult to cut open a resolute Charlton defence. A corner in the 80th minute saw Sean Morrison beat Leon Cort in the air, but the on loan Reading man couldn't direct his header on target.

SUB - The Addicks made their second change of the game in the 81st minute when Paul Hayes left the field to be replaced by Bradley Pritchard.

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Town had a late scare in the 89th minute when Charlton worked a set-piece well and Cort found himself six yards out with a clear header at goal; luckily for the Terriers, Peter Clarke managed to put enough pressure on the defender and he header over.

SUB - Diego Arismendi received a rapturous round of applause in the 90th minute when he left the field following an excellent full debut to be replaced by Scott Arfield.

BOOKING - Alex Smithies received a caution in the second minute of injury time after he was deemed to be time wasting by referee Boyeson.


Town's team (4-4-2):

Alex Smithies; Tom Clarke, Peter Clarke (c), Sean Morrison, Jack Hunt; Gary Roberts (Alan Lee 69), Antony Kay (Joey Gudjonsson 69), Diego Arismendi (Scott Arfield 90), Danny Ward; Jordan Rhodes, Lee Novak

Unused substitutes:

Ian Bennett, Calum Woods, Scott Arfield

Bookings Town: Kay 57, Novak 57, Smithies 90+2

Bookings Charlton: Russell (red) 57,

Gate: 15,735

Away: 1,118

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    Data provided by Press Association


    Town was the first club to win three successive league titles in 1926. Only Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United have matched this feat.