Charlton Athletic 1 (Bikey-Amougou 25)
Wolves 1 (Batth 65)
A pulsating contest between Charlton and Wolves finished all square although it was a game that could easily have gone the way of the Molineux men who dominated the attacking play, especially after the interval.
Kenny Jackett made four changes to his starting line up with James Henry, Leon Clarke, Bakary Sako and Lee Evans coming in for Dave Edwards, Nouha Dicko, Michael Jacobs and Rajiv van La Parra who were all named as substitutes.
Wolves kicked-off defending the end of The Valley that housed a sizeable travelling support and Carl Ikeme was forced into early action as he saved at the feet of home skipper Johnnie Jackson who beat the offside flag as he chased Igor Vetokele’s through pass.
Scott Golbourne played a ball down the line to Sako whose low cross was cleared before play switched and George Tucudean headed wide after a left-wing cross from Jordan Cousins.
Henry outpaced his marker on the right and delivered a low cross that just eluded Clarke before a defender turned the ball behind for a corner that was taken by Golbourne and cleared.
Tal Ben Haim hit a low distance shot wide after taking a pass from Vetokele, then Henry won a corner at the other end with keeper Stephen Henderson punching clear Sako’s kick.
In the 13th minute Henderson had to be at his best to turn over a fine effort from Henry who hooked the ball over his shoulder from the edge of the box after Kevin McDonald had nodded forward a half clearance.
Wolves were putting their hosts under pressure and Ben Haim had to shoot into his own side netting to prevent Sako reaching George Saville’s through ball.
Sako then swung a boot at Henry’s through ball but Henderson got down to save, and then Evans was only just wide with a low drive from 25-yards.
Against the run of play, Charlton moved ahead in the 25th minute after winning their first, and what proved to be their only corner of the game. Andre Bikey-Amougou hit a tremendous near post volley into the top corner after a perfect connection from Cousin’s corner.
From the restart Charlton were close to a second after Evans lost the ball to Vetokele. He quickly fed Tucudean who was just wide of the far post with an angled shot.
Two Sako corners came to nothing before Wolves suffered a cruel blow with Saville meeting Clarke’s squared pass and drilling a shot against the inside of the post with the ball rolling virtually along the line before a grateful defender hooked clear at the opposite stick.
Both sides had a chance shortly before the break with Evans again a touch wide with a similar shot to his earlier effort whilst Lawrie Wilson wasn’t too far away for Charlton with a 22-yard first time drive.
Half-Time: Charlton 1 Wolves 0
At the start of the new half Dicko was sent on in place of Saville as Wolves switched from a 4-3-3 formation to 4-4-2.
Wolves went in search of an early equaliser and Clarke headed over from a Sako corner and then Sako has a stab himself with an angled shot that Henderson just managed to turn over.
Twice in a two minute spell Clarke was close with efforts that were a fraction wide of either post – the first a shot on the turn from the edge of the area before he broke into the left of the box arrowing a shot across the face of goal.
Dicko used his tremendous pace to beat two men in a race to the by-line but his pull back went behind his team-mates in the six-yard box.
Tucudean was booked after a late challenge on Richard Stearman shortly before he was replaced by Franck Moussa.
Sako beat two men before laying the ball off for McDonald who took aim only for his shot to bounce clear off a defender.
The goal that Wolves so richly deserved arrived in the 65th minute after Henderson had saved from Sako. Henry lifted the resultant corner into the box and Danny Batth charged in to bury a powerful header (pictured).
Lifted by the leveller, and with their fans roaring them on, Wolves launched a succession of attacks and from a Henry free-kick, Sako nodded the ball back to McDonald who volleyed narrowly over the bar from 20-yards.
Henry fired into the side netting after the home defence had gotten into a tangle and, in a rare Charlton raid, Jackson was uncomfortably close to the far post after he had been set up by Bikey-Amougou.
In stoppage time, Dicko lost control as he went for a long ball from Sako that would have left him clean through, and the four minutes of added time finished with a scramble in the home area as Wolves continued to search for the winner their play merited.
Charlton: Henderson, Wilson (Bulot 74), Gomez, Jackson (capt), Bikey-Amougou, Vetokele, Wiggins, Buyens, Cousins, Ben Haim, Tucudean (Moussa 61).
Unused subs: Pope, Morrison, Harriott, Church, Fox.
Booking: Tucudean (59 – foul).
Wolves: Ikeme, Doherty, Golbourne, Saville (Dicko 45), Batth (capt), Stearman, Henry (Jacobs 87), Evans, Clarke (Edwards 81), McDonald, Sako.
Unused subs: McCarey, Rowe, van La Parra, Rickettsl.
Referee: P. Miller.