Barnsley manager Neill Collins was frustrated with the performance of the referee in a controversial 2-1 loss at Charlton as the Tykes were defeated on the road for the first time since November.

After two excellent goals from Alfie May had twice given Charlton the lead either side of an Adam Phillips penalty, a feisty second period saw a Fabio Jalo volley ruled out for a tight offside.

“We should have been sitting here with a point,” said Collins. “But we’re not because of a poor decision at the end of the game. He’s a yard onside, so I’m really disappointed with that.”

The visitors also had a shout for a penalty before the one they were awarded in the first half, when Devante Cole and Michael Hector tangled legs.

“It’s a stonewall penalty,” Collins added. “Devante goes through, he’s about to shoot, he gets bundled over. How he didn’t get that, I’m not quite sure.”

The Barnsley boss did concede that his side had the chances to win the game: “At half-time we should have been in the lead. But we weren’t because of missed opportunities.

“(Cole) is going through a little period right now. I’m sure it will be a matter of time before he’s putting them in the back of the net.

“Alfie May showed why he’s the top goalscorer in the league, with two great finishes. We’ve got players who are capable of doing that, but today we probably passed up too many good opportunities, and Charlton were pretty clinical.”

Charlton manager Nathan Jones was also quick to praise his forward.

“Alfie took his chances really well,” he said. “On the counter we were a constant threat and could have had more.”

“It’s an absolutely massive three points for us. A really good performance.

“They’re in the play-offs, they score goals freely, they’ve got one of the best away records. So for us to win the game, we’re delighted.”

After a winter spent just above the relegation zone, Jones has steadied the ship.

“I never take anything for granted but we’re not looking at that. All we want to do is keep moving forward,” he said.

Asked about what it takes to turn a club’s fortunes around so quickly, Jones gave a remarkably honest answer.

“Every part of your life. Literally every part of your life,” he said. “I live away from family. Anyone who works at the football club knows the hours we do, knows what we watch, knows how we prepare, knows how meticulous we are on every aspect of what we do.

“How we eat, how we sleep. If you want to raise standards then you have to set those standards, you have to live those standards.”

Alfie May’s double for Charlton secured a 2-1 win over play-off hopefuls Barnsley at The Valley.

May broke the deadlock with a tremendous free-kick in the 20th minute to fire Charlton ahead.

Adam Phillips grabbed an equaliser for Barnsley eight minutes later from the penalty spot following a handball by Kayne Ramsay.

But, after a dreadful miss from inside the six-yard box by Devante Cole, the Addicks regained the lead in the 40th minute when May curled in a shot from the left corner of the box following a clever dummy by George Dobson.

Chuks Aneke missed a 94th-minute penalty for Charlton after Liam Roberts fouled Tyreece Campbell, and Barnsley assistant coach Jon Stead was sent off for dissent a minute later.

Defeat left Barnsley with two wins from seven matches and Cole wihtout a goal in 12. But the Tykes still only need seven points from their last five games to guarantee a play-off spot.

The Addicks have now gone 11 games without defeat.

Exeter manager Gary Caldwell felt the draw was a fair result as his side failed to capitalise on a near-perfect start in the 1-1 stalemate with Charlton.

Ben Purrington’s sixth-minute goal against his former club was the first time Exeter had scored in the opening 15 minutes of a home league game since October 2021 but they let Charlton off the hook by sitting on that lead.

It came back to haunt them as Chuks Aneke’s header went in off Grecians defender Cheick Diabate with just three minutes remaining and it could have been worse for Exeter had Alfie May’s stoppage-time strike not hit the upright.

Caldwell said: “I think it was probably a fair result. I think both teams might think they could have won it.

“I want us to be better over the course of the game; I thought our start in the game was fantastic and the personality we showed right from kick-off, the bravery to play our way, the patterns of play we had worked on all week were killing them.

“We scored a brilliant goal and then we stopped doing what we did to get in front. We made it a 50-50 game. We lost our composure.

“When we give it away playing out, we then become edgy at doing that. I think it’s a lesson that we have to stick to the process. We have to keep doing the things that got us in front in the game and not turn the game into a 50-50 game.

“We’re four games unbeaten but we need to be better.”

Charlton boss Nathan Jones was left with mixed emotions.

He said: “I am just disappointed. If we had started the game better and just been a bit more front-footed and cleared our lines a bit and taken the game to them in the first 10 minutes, we wouldn’t have lost the game.

“We were good first half and created enough chances and moved the ball well but 1-0 puts a different spin on stuff.

“Second half we came out and went after it in the first six, seven minutes and then the game evened out and it wasn’t until I made the changes that we looked like we were going to score.

“Then we finally get the goal and continued to go for it, we went for the win and should have won it at the end. The positives are that we are another game unbeaten, it is another point and we will keep going.

“I wanted us to be front-footed and come out of the blocks but we were a mile off what we have been in recent weeks. Now we have got three home games where I really want us to be front-footed.”

Charlton boss Nathan Jones was left less than impressed with the state of the Fleetwood pitch after their 1-1 draw.

Blustery conditions made it difficult for both sides but Ryan Graydon came off the bench to salvage a point for battling Fleetwood as his 84th-minute strike cancelled out Alfie May’s opener at Highbury.

“It was just brutal really, a brutal game,” reflected Jones.

“The conditions and the pitch made a spectacle very hard out there.

“There was a lot of honesty out there, but very little quality so a point was a fair result.

“I don’t think a Football League pitch should be like this. For whatever reason it is, I don’t want to comment too much on it. But it made any kind of footballing game very difficult. The wind took away any chance of a spectacle.

“It’s one of those things, it’s EFL football. It was a brutal game today.

On the goal the Addicks conceded late on, he added: “We lost a runner, lose a challenge then another challenge and they tap it in off the post. I’m really disappointed because there were four things we could have done better.

“The manner of the goal was very disappointing. It was probably an even result, but when you lead going into whatever minute it was you expect to see it out and we didn’t.”

It was a goal which denied the London club all three points, though they stretched their unbeaten run to eight games.

But for the Cod Army it could be a precious point in their survival bid.

They are five points off safety and boss Charlie Adam was left wanting more.

He said: “If you look at what we did again, we created three or four big chances.

“The impact of the subs did a good job again. I’m really pleased for Ryan to get the goal, it was the least that we deserved from that game.

“We will go away, dust ourselves down and look back on it with real frustration in terms of not winning the football match.

“I believe we had the best chances in the game so it’s frustrating. But I’ll say it again, we’ve closed the gap and that’s all you can do.

“It’s disappointing but all we can do is look forward to the games that we have left.”

Alfie May’s 25th goal of the season was not enough for Charlton as Fleetwood hit back late to earn a 1-1 draw in League One.

May scored from the penalty spot but substitute Ryan Graydon rescued a point for the hosts with six minutes left, rounding keeper Harry Isted before tucking home from a tight angle.

The Cod Army started brilliantly with Xavier Simons denied by a super save from Isted. Jayden Stockley also headed inches wide, still with less than 10 minutes played.

The hosts continued to press, Brendan Wiredu and Gavin Kilkenny also going close.

The Addicks’ first decent chance came after 36 minutes when Macaulay Gillesphey drilled narrowly over the top.

The visitors went ahead in first-half added time when May tucked home a penalty after he had been felled by Shaun Rooney.

Fleetwood went close soon after the restart when Bosun Lawal saw a well-struck shot saved by Isted. Wiredu also headed wide from Phoenix Patterson’s cross.

At the other end Thierry Small’s effort was saved by Jay Lynch, before Graydon went on to salvage a point for the hosts with time running out.

Charlton manager Nathan Jones said he was pleased to have League One top scorer Alfie May spearheading his attack as the striker’s 19th and 20th league goals of the season earned a 3-2 win over Carlisle.

Charlton did not have it all their own way, going behind to a 20th-minute volley from Luke Armstrong, but goals either side of half-time from May and Daniel Kanu helped to resume normal service.

Taylor Charters equalised with a 63rd-minute penalty after Armstrong was fouled by Macaulay Gillesphey but 15 minutes from time May pounced on a Sam Lavelle back-pass to claim the points.

“He’s a wonderful player,” Jones said of his striker, who arrived for his own media duties with a bottle of champagne.

“He’s a clever player, he’s a great lad and he’s brilliant around the place. He thinks about his game, he thinks about his movement and he doesn’t just go and play off the cuff.

“He’s scored goals wherever he’s been, he’s come here and he’s been scoring goals. His dip coincided with a dip in the team’s form, which can happen, but all you have to do is keep giving these players confidence and keep talking to them and Alfie’s responded fantastically well.”

The result moves Charlton 10 points clear of relegation but Jones insisted he remains focused on his team playing well.

“It wasn’t [about] survival, it was about getting performances,” he said. “Yes, we want to make sure that we don’t get sucked into any kind of relegation thing but we want to finish as high as we possibly can because we want to build.

“We’re not just planning for now, we want to build for the future as well.”

Carlisle boss Paul Simpson felt his team merited a much-needed point.

“The players have worked extremely hard today and probably deserved something out of it but unfortunately we go away with nothing again, which is the story of our season,” he said.

“For long periods I thought we looked decent. I thought our shape was good. I thought the plan that we had was good.”

“I’m pleased with some individual performances. Harry [Lewis]. Dylan McGeouch got on the ball and passed the ball well for us. Harrison [Neal] had another good game. Good for Luke to get a goal.”

Unfortunately for Simpson, individual errors cost the Cumbrians. “We’ve just given really poor goals away today,” he said.

“We just haven’t reacted well enough for the second goal. It’s a throw-in and we’ve not squeezed high enough up the pitch to make us nice and compact.”

“The third goal is a mistake and it’s just one of those things. We’ve got to clear our lines in that position.”

Alfie May scored twice as Charlton secured back-to-back League One wins for the first time this season, beating Carlisle 3-2.

After a 20th-minute volley from Luke Armstrong gave the visitors an unlikely lead, Charlton turned the game around with goals either side of half-time – May following up a deflected shot from Daniel Kanu in the 37th minute and Kanu himself crashing home from close range in the 54th.

Carlisle manager Paul Simpson had asked his players to show pride and they did so, Taylor Charters equalising from the penalty spot after Macaulay Gillesphey had fouled Armstrong.

But the hosts’ quality eventually told, May latching onto a loose back-pass from former Addick Sam Lavelle and rounding the keeper to claim his fourth goal in four games after just one in the previous 13.

Charlton’s first home victory since November means they now find themselves comfortably in mid-table, 10 points above 21st-placed Cheltenham and quickly forgetting any relegation concerns.

Carlisle’s 10th loss in 11 games means they will almost certainly go down.

Late strikes from Tyreeq Bakinson and Alfie May earned Charlton a 3-1 League One win at Cheltenham to ease their relegation fears.

The improving Addicks took a first-half lead through Daniel Kanu before Liam Sercombe’s 70th-minute leveller set up a tense finish.

But the late double lifted Nathan Jones’ side seven points clear of their hosts and the drop zone.

It took 19 minutes for them to break the deadlock, with Conor Coventry releasing Tennai Watson on the right and his low ball was turned in by Kanu for his 10th of the season.

May was denied by Liam Kinsella’s block in the box and Luke Southwood blocked another May effort, but the rebound was skewed wide in the 33rd minute.

Matty Taylor saw a low shot deflected wide, but Charlton were on top for much of the first half.

Cheltenham equalised when Jordan Thomas weaved past two defenders and forced Harry Isted into a low save, but he could only parry it to Sercombe, who tapped home.

But Bakinson struck four minutes from the end with a low shot that Southwood reached – but could not keep out – after George Dobson’s pass.

And former Robins hero May added the third in the 90th minute, tapping into an empty net after collecting Freddie Ladapo’s pass as Charlton extended their unbeaten run to six.

Louis Appere scored with 10 minutes remaining as Northampton fought back to draw 1-1 with struggling Charlton in Sky Bet League One.

The Addicks led after just four minutes at Sixfields when their opponents failed to clear their lines and the ball dropped to Karoy Anderson on the edge of the box and his shot took deflected past goalkeeper Louie Moulden.

Daniel Kanu was close to converting Conor Coventry’s fizzed cross before Moulden saved from Alfie May as Charlton enjoyed much the better of the first half.

Northampton failed to create anything of note before the break but they were almost level early in the second half when Mitch Pinnock slammed the ball into the side-netting.

The visitors continued to threaten on the break and May headed against the post.

However, they were pegged back in calamitous circumstances.

Goalkeeper Harry Isted was caught in possession by Sam Hoskins and the ball fell to substitute Appere, who gleefully rolled it into an empty net to rescue a point for his team.

Derby boss Paul Warne admitted his team did not look like a promotion side after they were beaten 2-1 at home by strugglers Charlton.

For the second time in four days, Derby lost after going in front and Warne knows they have to improve to have a chance of going up.

Derby had a lot of possession in the first half and went ahead in the 39th minute when Eiran Cashin headed in a corner.

But it was different in the second and a rush of blood from goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith allowed Charlton to draw level.

Wildsmith brought down Daniel Kanu and Alfie May sent him the wrong way with the resulting penalty.

Another mistake gave Charlton their first win since November when Ebou Adams let Kanu in and although Wildsmith blocked his shot, Karoy Anderson scored his first senior goal with the rebound.

“Very frustrated, I thought the first 20 minutes our play was really good without creating clearcut openings and I was really pleased with how we played first half,” Warne said.

“Second half we didn’t start as well and there’s a massive turning point. Joe’s held his hands up, but it’s a mistake.

“That was disappointing from our point of view and then another mistake in the middle of the pitch and they punished that.

“It isn’t a performance of a team that’s going to get promoted and that isn’t the level of performance that we expect.

“We have shot ourselves in the foot no end of times this season at home, more so than away, and tonight we got punished for our mistakes, and we have to be better if we are going to be successful.

“We didn’t have enough, that’s the honest truth. It’s really disappointing because in a position like that with so few games left, you need to see games out and manage them better.

“We didn’t have enough great performances in the second half to justify the three points.”

Charlton manager Nathan Jones admitted his side’s half-time team-talk was the catalyst for t

“It was a game of two halves,” the Welsh boss said. “The first half, we were nowhere near the levels we demand. We were tentative, we weren’t aggressive enough and we allowed Derby to do certain things we didn’t want them to do.

“We had a few words at half-time and in the second half I thought we were outstanding. We over-ran them, we were aggressive and I’m really proud of the second-half performance.

“And that’s what they’ve got to learn, they haven’t won for a long time, so we are having to cross milestones in terms of things, but that second-half performance was everything I wanted from my team.

“Now we are showing form that can take us forward.”

Ephron Mason-Clark scored twice as Peterborough extended their unbeaten league run to 10 games with a 2-1 win at Charlton that moved them up to second place in Sky Bet League One.

The Posh striker fired his side ahead midway through the first half before restoring the lead in the 75th minute after Alfie May had levelled for the Addicks with his 20th goal of the season in all competitions.

The visitors dominated the first half and deserved to make the 29th-minute breakthrough when Mason-Clark curled a shot beyond Addicks keeper Ashley Maynard-Brewer.

Charlton, who have now lost four of their last five league games, were booed off at half-time and boss Michael Appleton made a double change in an attempt to spark life into his side.

The changes had an immediate effect as the hosts drew level just three minutes after the restart when May headed home from close range after Tyreeq Bakinson’s shot was blocked.

However, they finished the game empty-handed when Mason-Clark drilled in a low drive 15 minutes from time.

Charlton striker Alfie May admitted he had personal inspiration for scoring twice in his side’s 6-1 FA Cup first-round replay win over Cray Valley at the Artic Stadium.

Now 30, May played in non-league football until he was 23 and demonstrated the hunger that has allowed him to make the transition to the professional game.

May said: “I was so excited to come back here. I’ve been like a big kid all day.

“I looked at the programme and saw Cray’s league table in it with the likes of Hythe Town and Erith & Belvedere, who were teams that I played for. Now I’m playing for Charlton in League One, which is crazy.

“I didn’t get to the first round of the FA Cup when I was in non-league. I was one round away, but you could see tonight how much it means to these type of teams.”

Charlton manager Michael Appleton praised his side’s attitude, but admitted that his team might have been reduced to 10 men just before half-time.

The League One outfit’s keeper Sam Walker brought down Kyrell Lisbie just outside the area, but referee Charles Breakspear awarded a penalty, meaning that under the double jeopardy rule, he could not send off Walker and instead gave him only a yellow card.

Appleton said: “We maybe got a little fortunate that the referee didn’t give them a free-kick because if it’s not a penalty, Sam could have potentially been sent off. But I thought we earned our fortune with the attitude we showed tonight.

“The only thing we lacked in the first half was that killer pass or touch. But we had a great attitude for the whole 95 minutes.

“There was a real focus in the group, we moved the ball really well and once the game opened up in the second half we got our rewards.”

After Lisbie cancelled out May’s opener, Charlton ran riot with Miles Leaburn, May, George Dobson, Tyreece Campbell and Micah Mbick all finding the net.

Cray Valley manager Steve McKimm was far from disappointed with the performance of his part-time players, whose FA Cup run through five qualifying rounds and two televised ties against Charlton has generated around £200,000 for the Isthmian League South East Division club.

McKimm said: “I’m super-proud of my players. They have been beaten by a top League One club.

“My players worked all day today until 4.30 or 5 o’clock, then came here and had to chase shadows at times. Trust me, the Charlton players didn’t have to work today before they came here.

“But the most pleasing thing was that we got a goal for our fans to cheer. The boys have had their moment on the TV twice and done themselves proud because Charlton had to bring out their big guns to come here and win.

“That’s our FA Cup story over and now our focus is on the FA Trophy and the league. The cup run has made the club thousands of pounds. The ground needs a couple of things doing to it to be able to go up if we were to get promoted.”

Cray Valley’s FA Cup adventure was finally ended following a 6-1 first-round replay defeat by League One Charlton at the Artic Stadium.

Having come from behind to force a replay in a 1-1 draw at the Valley 11 days earlier, the Isthmian League South East Division side were dreaming again late in the first half when Kyrell Lisbie cancelled out an Alfie May goal with a 44th-minute penalty.

That renewed hope was snuffed out when Charlton scored three goals in the opening 13 minutes of the second half.

The effervescent May, who played non-league football himself until the age of 23, scored a dazzling solo effort to add to a Miles Leaburn header before George Dobson drove a majestic 20-yard shot into the top corner.

Two Charlton substitutes completed the scoring in the final 13 minutes. Tyreece Campbell side-footed home a Dobson pass before Micah Mbick steered in a rebound.

Despite the heavy defeat, Cray Valley estimate that they have generated around £200,000 from their cup run, which started in August and took in five qualifying rounds before this first round proper tie.

The catalyst for Charlton’s victory was May, whose pace, urgency and hunger befitted a player with such deep non-league roots.

He had already fired off six shots by the time he gave Charlton a 35th-minute lead, controlling a Lucas Ness long ball sublimely on the outside of his right foot before adding a delightful dinked lob over Cray Valley keeper Sam Freeman.

The non-league side equalised when Lisbie was felled by Charlton keeper Sam Walker and then converted his spot-kick to the joy of the Cray Valley fans as well as his father Kevin, who played for both clubs and who was watching on from the nearby TV gantry.

That was before Charlton assumed total control in the second half to set up a second-round tie along the A2 at League Two side Gillingham.

Charlton boss Michael Appleton admitted the 3-2 victory at Wigan – his side’s first away win of the Sky Bet League One season – was ‘job done’.

All the damage was done in the first half at the DW Stadium, with two goals from Alfie May and one from Corey Blackett-Taylor.

After substitute Tyreece Campbell came within a lick of paint of making it four shortly after the restart, the Wigan revival began.

Thelo Aasgaard hit the bar – team-mate Callum Lang had done the same in the first half – before the Norway junior international pulled one back with six minutes to go.

And a frantic finale was ensured when substitute Stephen Humphrys scored Wigan’s second goal in the last minute, only for Charlton to hold out.

“We got the job done, which was the most important thing and the first thing I said in the dressing room afterwards,” said Appleton.

“I’m not going to focus on the last 10 minutes. I’ll focus on what I’ve seen before.

“We were on the front foot. We were pressing really high. The players looked like they were enjoying working really hard and making contact with people.

“If you want to win on the road, you need that type of mentality. We knew the areas of the pitch we had to press really aggressively and we did that and got all the rewards for it.

“Even if they got the first goal, if we’d got three or four wins under our belt on the road, then I don’t think they get a second.

“It’s just that mentality of ‘oh no, surely this can’t happen’, which you could sense was dropping into one or two players.

“But, to be fair, there were a few players on the pitch who rallied round and got after some of our younger players and made sure they could see the game out.”

Wigan boss Shaun Maloney took ‘full responsibility’ for the result after making three changes to a side that had won three matches in the space of a week.

A triple change at the interval helped redress the balance, with Martial Godo coming on and laying on the goals for Aasgaard and Humphrys, but it was too little, too late.

“I spoke a few weeks ago in terms of us having a really great start to the season, and I spoke about complacency setting in,” he said. “And possibly I think that happened again.

“But I have to take full responsibility for that, I didn’t get the team right. You could see the way we played in the second half was very different.

“I didn’t get the team right, the changes I made – that I hoped would have a positive impact – didn’t contribute to a good performance by the team.

“Charlton were very good, they deserved their 3-0 lead at a minimum. But the second half was the complete opposite, and I’ll have to focus a lot on that heading into the weekend.

“As a club, from top to bottom, we have to understand that at no point can we take our foot off the gas, any of us, and that starts with me.”

Charlton Athletic recorded their first Sky Bet League One away victory of the season at Wigan – but only after a five-goal thriller at the DW Stadium.

The visitors enjoyed an early let-off when Callum Lang hit the bar with a free-kick to open up a three-goal lead by half-time.

Alfie May opened the scoring in the 21st minute at the second attempt after Sam Tickle had clawed away his initial header.

May doubled the lead 10 minutes later with a cool strike into the bottom corner.

And the visitors were in dreamland when Corey Blackett-Taylor made it three with a fierce drive two minutes before the interval.

Only the woodwork prevented substitute Tyreece Campbell making it four at the beginning of the second half.

And that almost opened the door for a remarkable Wigan comeback.

After Thelo Aasgaard hit the bar with a clever flick, the Norway youth international rifled home into the roof of the net with six minutes left.

The home side were further boosted when substitute Stephen Humphrys fired into the top corner in the last minute, but Charlton held on.

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