Adam Randell escapes the attention of Albie Morgan

Report | Argyle 3 Charlton Athletic 2

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Argyle 3
Cosgrove 13
Ennis 15
Roberts 46

Charlton Athletic 2
Kanu 8
Anderson 90

An Argyle side packed with youth and home-grown talent surged from behind to book their place in the Papa Johns Trophy round of 16 with a 3-2 victory over Charlton Athletic.

Having gone a goal down early on courtesy of a Daniel Kanu effort, Argyle powered to a 3-1 lead with goals from Sam Cosgrove, Niall Ennis and 17-year-old Caleb Roberts, who entered the history books as the Pilgrims' fifth-youngest competitive scorer, as well as grabbing the winner. Substitute Karoy Anderson fired home a consolation in added time for the Addicks, but the result rarely looked in doubt following Roberts' effort early in the second half.

Midfielder Adam Randell captained a starting XI containing six products of the Pilgrims’ Academy, but summer signing Mickel Miller was perhaps the most notable inclusion, making his first competitive start at wing-back after an injury interrupted start to life in Green.

The Green Army in attendance were offered a swift introduction to the former Rotherham man’s abilities inside the opening minute, as Miller danced down wing in front of the Lyndhurst Road Stand and generated two crossing opportunities – the first blocked low, and the second whipped narrowly over goalkeeper Nathan Harness’ crossbar.

At the other end, Charlton offered pacey outlets of their own. First, Tyreece Campbell broke down the left and flashed an effort over Callum Burton’s crossbar. The Greens did not heed the warning, and Daniel Kanu capitalised on some loose play at the back to pick Oscar Halls’ pocket inside the penalty area and bear down on goal. Kanu’s first attempt, low to the far post, was brilliantly saved by Burton, but the rebound fell kindly to the 18-year-old, who gratefully tucked it away.

The Greens’ senior statesmen immediately set about helping the youngsters back on their feet. A lovely interchange between Bali Mumba and Ennis saw the latter lay a perfectly timed pass for Cosgrove into the right channel, and the striker took a touch before firing emphatically across Harness and into the far corner.

Just two minutes later, it was Charlton’s turn to cough up the ball in a dangerous area. Under pressure Cosgrove and with his back to goal, Addicks apprentice Zach Mitchell mistakenly laid the ball to Ennis lurking unmarked yards from goal. Seven minutes after his side fell behind, the striker fired Argyle in front, sidestepping the desperate dive of Harness before firing past a lunging defender on the goalline.

Both sides looked far more confident in possession of the ball, and Campbell did his best to single-handedly haul the Addicks back on terms on 20 minutes, spinning away down the left flank before cutting inside and firing at goal from the angle, but Burton was again on his toes to make a smart save with his legs.

Chances were flowing in an extremely open encounter, and Argyle really could have had three or four before the game was half an hour old.

Midfield starlet Roberts drilled cleanly to the near post from the edge of the area to draw a good stop from Harness, before another engine room talent, Will Jenkins Davies, was presented with a chance inside the box after another defensive mishap. Similar opportunities followed for the lively duo of Cosgrove and Ennis to add to their tallies, but last-ditch blocks kept Charlton in the tie.

The Greens enjoyed the majority of the play in the first half, but the direct threat of Charlton’s pacey forwards kept Argyle’s youthful defensive trio on their toes. A ball over the top sent goalscorer Kanu racing behind, but Burton once again evidenced his credentials with a brave stop at the striker’s feet.

On the stroke of half time - with the final touch of the opening 45 minutes - Ennis headed over from six yards with Harness unsighted after a brilliant clipped cross from Jenkins Davies.

Within a minute of the second half, a third arrived – and it was 17-year-old Roberts who gleefully opened his professional account. Yet another loose defensive pass placed the Charlton defence under pressure on the edge of the area, and Roberts showed both strength and composure beyond his tender years to win the ball and hook beyond Harness at the Devonport End.

After a host of opportunities in the first half, Roberts’ strike took the competitive edge out of the fixture somewhat, and the following period was notably more subdued. The majority of the action occurred in Steven Schumacher’s technical area, seeing Mumba, Ennis, Cosgrove and Randell replaced by Joe Edwards, Ryan Hardie, Freddie Issaka and Morgan Whittaker.

The next attempt on goal came on 78 minutes, and it was spectacular. Addicks right back Nathaniel Asiimwe took aim from all of 30 yards with a rocket that seemed destined for the top corner until Burton, voted Man of the Match by sponsors Influence Planning for a reason, leapt to claw the ball wide with another top class save.

Not to be outdone by his contemporary, another Argyle history maker – youngest ever first-team appearance maker Issaka – broke clear to go one-on-one with Harness, but he would have to wait another day to join Roberts in the archives as an Argyle goalscorer.

In the end, it was the Addicks' substitute, Karoy Anderson, who would take his chance, keeping composure to spring the offside trap and fire under Burton in stoppage time.

It proved to be no more than a consolation, the Greens are through to the round of 16 – the draw will be made on Thursday at 4.30pm.

Argyle: 25 Callum Burton, 11 Niall Ennis (9 Ryan Hardie 60), 14 Mickel Miller (42 Jack Endacott half-time), 16 Sam Cosgrove (48 Freddie Issaka 68), 17 Bali Mumba (8 Joe Edwards 60), 20 Adam Randell (capt) (19 Morgan Whittaker 75), 36 Finley Craske, 37 Brandon Pursall, 43 Oscar Halls, 44 Will Jenkins Davies, 49 Caleb Roberts. Substitutes: 1 Mike Cooper (gk), 19 22 Brendan Galloway.


Charlton: 30 Nathan Harness, 8 Jake Forster-Caskey (50 Henry Rylah half-time), 10 Albie Morgan, 19 Jack Payne (capt), 27 Deji Elerewe, 32 Aaron Henry (45 Karoy Anderson 75), 35 Daniel Kanu, 36 Richard Chin, 43 Tyreece Campbell, 48 Zach Mitchell, 52 Nathan Asiimwe. Substitutes: 41 Ahmed Kone (gk), 39 Sam Oguntayo, 49 Patrick Casey, 53 Seydil Toure, 54 Harvey Kedwell.

Booked: Henry 11

Attendance: 1,394 (101 away)

Referee: Robert Lewis

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