Charlton AthleticSport

Chuks Aneke a vital attacking component for Charlton Athletic – as key man lauds his impact against Ipswich Town

George Dobson reckons that Chuk Aneke’s game-changing impact in Saturday’s 4-4 draw against Ipswich only underlined the importance of keeping the powerful frontman fit.

A groin injury had ruled the 29-year-old striker out of the first couple of months of the campaign.

Aneke marked his return with a goal in the 4-2 victory over Exeter City earlier this month.

And his introduction on the hour mark in the thriller against the Tractor Boys, along with Corey Blackett-Taylor, helped Charlton finally pose a major attacking threat.

Aneke’s cross eventually led to Jes Rak-Sakyi scoring to make it 2-1 and he also played a part in the approach play before Dobson headed an equaliser in the ninth minute of stoppage time.

“With having Chuks injured and Miles [Leaburn] injured we haven’t always had a lot of options at the top end of the pitch, which is not the easiest,” said Dobson. “Hopefully Chuks stays fit. You’ve seen him today – he’s an absolute beast when he plays like that for half an hour.

Picture: Kyle Andrews

“We’ve had a lot of good performances. I don’t think there have been many where we’ve been outplayed or been poor. Sometimes we’ve probably struggled a bit in the final third to create and score.

“We can’t waste this momentum.

“A lot of teams that are 4-2 down with two minutes to play would probably chuck the game in. We kept going. That shows where we are as a group. We had that run where we were drawing a lot of games but we were strong enough to get through that. I feel like we’re out the other side now. We don’t really fear anyone.

“We were conceding bad goals and not taking chances. Football is all about the both boxes. We were good between the boxes and letting ourselves down either end, which is the most important part of the game.

“We’ve scored a lot more goals recently – the four against Exeter, three against Portsmouth and another four today against teams who are all in the top half of the table.

Picture: Kyle Andrews

“We’ve got a lot of belief and know we’re capable of being a play-off team.”

Charlton’s leaner spell of results saw manager Ben Garner move to a back four and add extra support for Jayden Stockley, the only fit senior forward before Aneke return.

Asked if the formation switch had helped the Addicks have more of an attacking threat, Dobson replied: “Definitely. Jayden’s strengths are having someone closer to him. Since he’s had someone closer it has been easier for us to get up the pitch.

“But we changed to a 4-3-3 today at 2-0 and Chuks came on and played that role up top on his own. We’ve got that adaptability, which is really important.”

Dobson has played in a midfield two with Scott Fraser.

“I’ve been surprised how much he [Fraser] has invested into that other side of the game – the side I’m more into, the defensive side,” said Dobson.

“Especially in a two-man midfield, both have got to really work for the team because a lot of teams play three in midfield and you’re probably going to be over-run at times.

“He’s been outstanding, everyone knows his quality on the ball. It’s been a joy playing with him.”


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