A tough test as the new season looms...
Darren Sarll named a strong starting XI for Stevenage's penultimate home friendly of pre-season. Dale Gorman, Tom Pett, Rowan Liburd and Danny Newton all came into the team after starting on the bench last time out.
Charlton got off to a good start with two chances inside the first two minutes. Fosu’s long range effort meeting the gloves of Joe Fryer, before Jason Pierce rattled the bar after heading into the ground. The visitors were on top during the early stages.
The Addicks continued to force Boro back, and persisted with testing Joe Fryer between the sticks. This time Novak with a clear cut opportunity in the box, thankfully our young goalkeeper was there to match the effort.
20 minutes into the game, and Stevenage saw their first effort on goal. A pinpoint Mark McKee cross to Fraser Franks, who unfortunately couldn't hit the target. Both Stevenage and the rain were getting stronger as the half went on.
Half an hour had gone by, and Stevenage's improved play finally brought dividends. Gorman whipped in a free kick onto the penalty spot, and as Charlton failed to clear, the ball fell to Fraser Franks on the edge of the box who found the bottom corner with a clincial finish.
Almost instantly after taking the lead, the visitors equalised. Karlan Ahearne-Grant found himself in the right place at the right time as the ball landed at his feet after a Fryer save, and then converted from 6 yards out.
Half-time saw Alex Samuel replace Rowan Liburd and as the second half got underway, Stevenage continued where they left off, pressing Charlton high and not giving the visitors time to play. Alex Samuel’s glancing header fell just wide of the post as Boro looked most likely to score next.
That wasn't to be the case though as 56 minutes in, against the run of play, Charlton took the lead. Jake Forster-Caskey squeezing the ball through the Stevenage defence and into the back of the net from a Charlton corner.
The game was beginning to peter out as both sides made numerous changes during the half. Neither team were able to control possession, as it looked as if the tie could go either way.
There was late pressure from Charlton as the subs flooded in and a much younger Stevenage side battled their way through the remainder of the game. Josh Magennis saw his effort hit the post as he looked to confirm the result.
The game finished 2-1 to the visitors, as Stevenage finished the game with 4 academy boys and 2 trialists. A good test in the run up to the start of the new season.
Fryer (Day 75), Henry (Wade-Slater 60), Franks (Fraser 75), Wilkinson (Wilmot 60), Martin (Iontton 75), Beautyman (Trialist 1 75), Gorman (Trialist 2 75), Pett (Ferry 75), Liburd (Samuel 45), McKee (Conlon 60), Newton (Turgott 60).
Two weeks today the Sky Bet League Two season starts all over again. Make sure you don't miss a game at home by purchasing a Season Ticket in time for August 5th.