Fleetwood Town kept their first league clean sheet of 2018, as they held play-off chasing Charlton Athletic to a 0-0 draw on Saturday.
It was an entirely even game in South East London, with Town having the better of the chances, with Charlton controlling possession.
Ash Hunter had the best chance of the game forcing a low save from Ben Amos, with Jack Sowerby also denied inside the penalty area, while Tariqe Fosu had the best chance of the match for Charlton in the second period.
John Sheridan made three changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Plymouth Argyle last Saturday, with Cian Bolger a returning face after missing out last time through injury. Toumani Diagouraga and Wes Burns also came into the side, having started from the bench against Argyle. Nathan Pond, George Glendon and Conor McAleny were on the bench.
The Addicks began the game well and looked dangerous early on down the flanks and had most of the possession in the opening few minutes. Ben Reeves had the first effort of the game as he volleyed an effort wide after a free kick was rebounded out to him.
Charlton almost struck lucky when Gethin Jones clearance hit Reeves, allowing him to take advantage and waltz into the box, however his shot flashed across the face of goal without a touch and Fleetwood cleared.
Town’s first great effort came from Paddy Madden who struck a volley from Burns’ cross, but his fierce shot was blocked by a Charlton defender.
Hunter then looped a header towards goal, and despite it being easily caught by Amos, it did show Fleetwood coming back into the game after the hosts controlled the opening exchanges.
A great five minute spell then saw Hunter beat a defender on the edge of the box, before Charlton failed to clear and allowed the ball to flash across goal for the second time in the match.
It wasn’t until four minutes before the break that the next chance came, as Fosu turned on the edge of the area before blazing one over the bar.
That was it for the first half, but Charlton continued in the second from where they left off, as Fosu caused mayhem in the penalty area before Alex Cairns leapt high enough to punch his cross to safety.
There was little action in the next 20 minutes of the second period, as both sides cancelled each other out in midfield. That was until a slip by Addicks keeper Amos allowed Dempsey to spring the ball to Hunter. Amos redeemed himself by saving Hunter’s shot, but were fortunate not to be behind as Amos saved from Sowerby, before Burns couldn’t put away the rebound.
The game was into the final twenty minutes and was still goalless, but it was Fleetwood who looked like posing the bigger attacking threat. It wasn’t all going Town’s way though, as Charlton looked confident on the counter, but they struggled to get into the penalty area as Sheridan’s side looked strong defensively.
Another great chance went begging as Madden broke loose midway into the Charlton area and squared the ball to McAleny. Charlton’s defence did well to get back and cover, and quell the danger, as McAleny turned and was forced into a tight space where he could only shoot wide.
Sowerby then connected to Dempsey’s lay off as he was next to strike, but there was to be no breakthrough at the Valley as the game ended goalless.
Charlton XI: Amos (GK), Reeves (Zyro), Aribo, Sarr, Magennis (Ajose), Konsa, Fosu, Pearce ©, Marshall (Kaikai), Forster-Caskey, Bauer.
Substitutes not used: Jackson, Lennon, Dijksteel, Maynard-Brewer.
Fleetwood XI: Cairns (GK), Coyle, Eastham, Dempsey, Burns (McAleny), Bolger ©, Diagouraga, Madden (Hiwula), Jones, Hunter, Sowerby.
Substitutes not used: Pond, Grant, Maguire, Glendon, Neal (GK).
Referee: M Heywood