Addicks beat Royals in thriller
Charlton condemned Reading to a first defeat of the season after a 4-2 victory at the Valley.
Last Updated: 23/08/08 2:47pm
Charlton Athletic condemned Reading to a first defeat of the season after a thrilling 4-2 victory at the Valley.
Referee Lee Mason was a central figure in proceedings, awarding three penalties in addition to sending off Ibrahima Sonko.
Matt Holland and Andy Gray had put Charlton in control before Sonko and Stephen Hunt hauled Reading level.
However, further goals from Luke Varney and Hameur Bouazza sealed the points as Sonko was shown a red card late on.
Reading had the first serious opportunity of the match on nine minutes when Jimmy Kebe burst into the box, but he was denied by Nicky Weaver at his near post.
Charlton responded with Bouazza jinking into the area from the left and flicking a shot with the outside of his boot, which clipped the post.
The home side took the lead on 26 minutes when Holland scored his first goal at the Valley in four years when he stabbed the loose ball home after Marcus Hahnemann could only parry Varney's deflected shot.
On 34 minutes, Reading were awarded a penalty after Yassin Moutaouakil was adjudged to have bundled over Kevin Doyle, but the Irish striker thundered his spot-kick against the crossbar.
Varney tested Hahnemann at the opposite end, and Gray had a tame header saved, before Charlton were awarded a penalty on 41 minutes.
Sonko's nudge on Varney was deemed to have taken place inside the area and Gray made no mistake from 12 yards, sending Hahnemann the wrong way.
Atoned for error
Reading defender Sonko quickly atoned for conceding a penalty by giving his team hope in first-half injury-time as he placed a fine header beyond Weaver.
Early in the second half, Reading were given a second penalty when Jonathan Fortune was penalised for holding back Leroy Lita, with Hunt's effort saved by Weaver.
However, the Charlton keeper was ruled to have stepped off his line too early and Hunt slammed home the retaken spot-kick to draw Reading level.
Varney's deflected drive was tipped over by Hahnemann before the Charlton striker produced an excellent guided header on 68 minutes to put his team back in front.
Charlton made the points safe on 72 minutes when the impressive Bouazza, who is on loan from Fulham, steered home a volley at the back post.
Gray then headed against the crossbar, only to be flagged offside, before Sonko's topsy-turvy afternoon took a turn for the worse again.
Having been booked earlier in the half, Sonko received his second yellow card with six minutes to go for a rash lunge on Bouazza.
Reading almost grabbed a consolation late on when Noel Hunt headed against the crossbar as Charlton stood firm to claim their second win of the season.