Charlton fell to a slender defeat at league leaders Sheffield United as the hosts came from behind to run out 2-1 winners.
Ricky Holmes had given the Addicks a dream start, curling home a set-piece after just three minutes. However the Blades were level after quarter of an hour through Jack O’Connell’s header and Daniel Lafferty’s goal just after the interval proved decisive as Charlton would rue a handful of missed opportunities.
The Addicks took the game to the league leaders from the off and were rewarded after just three minutes as Holmes’ free-kick nestled beyond the reach of Simon Moore in the Blades’ goal to secure the winger’s ninth strike of the campaign.
Tony Watt came close to doubling the lead as his acrobatic effort came back off the crossbar, before Ezri Konsa – who signed a new three-year deal with the Addicks this week – tested Moore from the edge of the area.
They were made to pay for those misses as the hosts drew level with their first real attack – O’Connell heading home six yards out and unmarked from Mark Duffy’s cross.
The South Londoners still persisted with their aggressive style with both Lee Novak and Tony Watt seeing efforts blocked but it was Chis Wilder’s men who ended the period in the ascendancy – Billy Sharp’s dangerous ball just evading strike partner James Hanson at the far post before defender Ethan Ebanks-Landell grazed the bar with a header from a corner.
The Yorkshire side made that pressure pay early in the second half. Sharps’ cross found Lafferty at the far post – his first header was well-saved by Declan Rudd but the rebound fell straight to the wing-back to tap home from a yard out.
Holmes volleyed a deep centre over at the far post as Charlton went out in search of an equaliser and they really should have found one as Konsa scuffed an effort as Jake Forster-Caskey’s ball in was flicked on towards the midfielder recently called up to the England U20s.
Kieron Freeman and Chris Basham both came close to extending United’s lead, with the latter’s header only just clearing the Charlton crossbar as he found space at a corner
Lafferty was then denied by Rudd at his near post as the Blades looked to kill the contest off but the one goal advantage was enough as defeat means that Charlton remain six points above the League One drop zone.