Nigel Adkins targets 25 clean sheets this season after opening day stalemate with Sheffield Wednesday

BY LOUIS MENDEZ

Charlton kicked off their League One season with a goalless draw against Sheffield Wednesday – and boss Nigel Adkins was pleased with what he saw as a positive display.

Over 17,000 fans were in attendance following the lifting of coronavirus restrictions and they witnessed the official unveiling of the Alan Curbishley Stand at The Valley before kick-off.

The hosts were the better of the two sides during the stalemate but would have liked to work visiting stopper Bailey Peacock-Farrell – they failed to force a shot on target throughout the 90 minutes.

Sean Clare impressed on debut. Kyle Andrews

Two golden chances did fall to Albie Morgan in the second-period but the Addicks midfielder was off-target both times. Former Crystal Palace man Barry Bannan dragged the Owl’s best opening wide late on.

Adkins was happy to see his side start the campaign with a clean sheet.

“24 to go,” he said.

“I want 25 clean sheets. I can’t remember Craig (Macgillivray) having a save to make. We were comfortable playing out from the back and we were comfortable getting the ball forward.

“I thought Jayden Stockley was outstanding, a massive threat. And we talk about having DJ, Jaiyesimi. Wow, he was unplayable today. We just needed to get the ball to him more often.

Albie Morgan missed two gilt-edged chances. Kyle Andrews

“But, for me, it was a good start to what is going to be a long season. We’ve seen a committed side there who have demonstrated they’ve got a way to go and play in and out of possession to give us an opportunity to wins game of football.

“I thought it was a good game. I thought we showed a lot of commitment from our players. Sheffield Wednesday had to defend very well at times. The stadium was rocking, especially in the second-half. That’s what we wanted. 17 months without fans in the stadium and the players have given the fans something to cheer about. The fans have certainly got behind the players.

Nigel Adkins said Dialliang Jaiyesimi was unplayable against the Owls. Kyle Andrews

“We’ve had some good chances to go and score. Unfortunately, we didn’t capitalise on them at the time. There was an opportunity for them late on in the game. It just shows how the game went all the way until the end. It didn’t peter out for the first game of the season. We looked fit and strong. We had a big variety in our play.

“It was a challenging pitch because of the weather but we had a good variety where we could get into the attacking third of the pitch and create some good opportunities from there. You can see a very committed group of players working so hard for each other. We might only be a small group but we were totally committed. You can see with the fans getting behind them, everybody at Charlton Athletic is trying to be positive to keep moving us in the right direction.”

PHOTOS: KYLE ANDREWS

 


 

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