Charlton v Nottingham Forest
Wednesday August 20, 19:45
Live on Sky Sports
Charlton unbeaten after promotion
Ante-post relegation favourites Charlton twice came from behind to salvage a point at Barnsley in a hard-fought Saturday showdown at Oakwell. A 90th-minute penalty from Lyle Taylor helped the Addicks maintain their unbeaten start to the season following promotion after Conor Gallagher had earlier levelled proceedings before half-time.
Athletic spurned good early chances, with Ben Purrington firing wide from close range before Jonny Williams and Josh Cullen went close as the visitors applied plenty of pressure in the opening 45 minutes. However, Charlton soon fell behind against the run of play and the capital club were forced to dig deep in their efforts for a route back into the contest.
Lee Bowyer paid tribute to his team's battling character and attitude post-match, saying "It's crazy that I'm a bit disappointed with the point." The Charlton boss fielded an unchanged XI from the Addicks' previous encounter against Stoke but will be forced to alter his defence with Chris Solly suffering a concussion against Barnsley; Deji Oshilaja will slot in at the back.
Nottingham Forest impress on Saturday
Jolley Lolley led a whirlwind opening half hour at the City Ground on Saturday as Nottingham Forest dismantled Birmingham with consummate ease. The flying winger scored one and created another for the Tricky Trees in a 3-0 triumph, including a sumptuous opener after 15 minutes, before teeing up the second for Lewis Grabban soon after.
Michael Dawson's powerful close-range second-half header sealed victory for Forest, who missed numerous chances to add their tally in a one-sided final quarter. Sammy Ameobi, Samba Sow, Lolley and Grabban all wasted glorious opportunities to add to the Reds' tally in a timely performance and maiden Championship victory under Sabri Lamouchi's watch.
Lamouchi was quick to praise his players, claiming it was Forest's "best performance yet" under his stewardship. Nevertheless, the Reds boss demanded more, saying "I hope there is better to come in the future. We have to find our killer instinct in the box, to score one or two more goals." Carl Jenkinson is pushing for his first start, although Matty Cash may keep his place at right-back.
Addicks excel at The Valley
Charlton are unbeaten in each of their last six meetings with Nottingham Forest since 2013 but four of those fixtures ended all-square and a repeat on Wednesday night can be backed at 3.3512/5. The Addicks' decent recent record against the Tricky Trees doesn't extend to The Valley mind, with the hosts pocketing W1-D2-L2 in the last five meetings here.
Charlton 2.608/5 were smart operators on home soil during their promotion-winning campaign. Athletic bagged W16-D5-L2 last season as hosts, a run of results that included an eye-catching W4-D1-L0 return when welcoming top-six rivals, and the Addicks have already overcome highly-fancied Stoke here this season, suggesting they're no easy meat.
Nottingham Forest's 2.829/5 performance data marked the side out as a bottom-half team when playing away last term, and the visitors only managed to table four triumphs on their travels (W4-D11-L8). The Reds earned a 1-1 draw at Leeds in Sabri Lamouchi's opening road trip, although the team were second-best in that encounter and more evidence is required before supporting the guests at such quotes.
Back both sides to oblige
Charlton are the division's top goalscorers after three rounds of fixtures, although it's worth noting that the Addicks have been impressively clinical thus far. Lee Bowyer's boys have notched seven goals from just 13 on-target attempts, and 25 overall shots at goal. All three outings have paid out for Both Teams To Score 1.804/5, and Over 2.5 Goals 2.021/1 backers too.
Nottingham Forest's early contests have followed a similar path. Sabri Lamouchi's men have twice surprised the Over 2.5 Goals barrier with two tussles also rewarding BTTS backers. Collectively, the pair have scored in all six matches in 2019/20, whilst managing a solitary shutout, suggesting there's value in supporting both sides scoring.