Charlton AthleticSport

First win is always important, says Charlton midfielder Darren Pratley

Photo: Kyle Andrews


It’s important to get your season off and running with your first victory, says new Charlton signing Darren Pratley.

The South Londoners earned their maiden win of the season as they inflicted an injury-time goal on Shrewsbury Town on Saturday, having suffered the same fate themselves away to Sunderland on the opening day of the season.

Pratley, who signed a two-year deal with the Addicks having left Championship outfit Bolton Wanderers, provided the assist for Karlan Grant’s last-ditch header that got his new side off the mark for the campaign.

“We were quite happy with the performance last week, in the first-half especially,” explained the 33-year-old Pratley.

“But it’s always important to get your first win. Everyone says it doesn’t matter about the result early on but it does. The quicker you get your three points, especially at home, the better.  We’re off the mark now and hopefully we can continue that.

“Especially after last week where we were on the other end of the result against Sunderland. To get the right result was a great feeling. Obviously, we wanted to do it a little bit earlier. Their goal I thought was a little bit sloppy, we let them back into the game. But there’s no better feeling than winning a football match and to do it in the last minute was pleasing.

“Some of the boys were saying it was a clearance, my cross. It’s nice to get an assist and the main thing is the boys get the three points.”

Lenell John-Lewis had drawn the Shrews level inside the final seven minutes of the contest, cancelling out Lyle Taylor’s opener midway through the second-half – but Lee Bowyer’s side were not to be denied.

“It was the perfect way to react,” added Pratley.

“I think first-half we weren’t the greatest. These kinds of games against Shrewsbury are going to be a battle, it’s not always going to be nice pretty football, we had to dig in. We changed the shape a little bit in the second-half. We brought off Mark Marshall but to be fair the gaffer could have brought off any of us. He was a little but unlucky to come off. We changed the formation and brought on young Albie (Morgan).

“I thought he was brilliant when he came on. It seemed to open up a little bit. We had more options on the ball, created a bit more chances. Got up the field and got the win in the end.”

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