Phil Parkinson paid tribute to his young players as the Addicks first-ever game in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy ended in a 4-1 win over Barnet at The Valley on Tuesday night.
It wasn’t all plain sailing for the Addicks young guns however, with Barnet taking an 11th minute lead through John O’Flynn.
Charlton hit back though through Izale McLeod and full debutant Tamer Tuna to take the initiative before Nicky Bailey and Scott Wagstaff rounded off the scoring.
Speaking after the match, Parkinson said:
“It was more than a useful work out for us. Barnet are a good side. We’ve had them watched over the last few games and we knew we couldn’t take them lightly.
“After going a goal down, it’s about reactions, and we kept passing the ball and moving. I thought it was an excellent night for us. It was a combination of our experienced players showing a fantastic attitude and our younger players taking their opportunity.
“We wanted to keep the momentum going after our good start and we picked a team that could do that. This competition is about getting the attitude right in the first few rounds because all of a sudden the prize of getting to Wembley gets ever closer.”
“The league is our priority, of course. But there are a lot of happy players in that dressing room, the youngsters are on a massive high and that’s great for them.”
ASE graduates Chris Solly and Tuna were joined on the pitch by substitutes Alex Stavrinou and Yado Mambo, the latter taking to the fray in the second period for his first appearance in a red shirt.
“We threw on young Yado, who has been on work experience at Welling United, and he made a contribution,” declared Parkinson. “Tamer Tuna really showed us what we see every day in training; that he’s got a fantastic football brain and is a very clever player. Scott Wagstaff obviously scored again and it was good night for us. They’re going to be 10-foot tall when they walk into Sparrows Lane on Thursday.”
“With Yado we can do it [the work experience] on a match-to-match basis. It’s been great for his development. He’s a colossus of a fella and when he goes for those headers, other players tend to get out of the way, and that’s what you want from your centre-backs.
The youngsters could again feature against Oldham Athletic on Saturday, with Parkinson admitting he has several injury doubts for the weekend’s clash, including the right-sided pair of Frazer Richardson and Lloyd Sam.