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Missed penalty costs Addicks

Kelly Youga tussles with a Bilbao opponent
Kelly Youga tussles with a Bilbao opponent

Charlton 0 Athletic Bilbao 1

Charlton underwent a thorough examination as they rounded off their pre-season match preparation with defeat against powerful but fiesty La Liga side Athletic Bilbao at The Valley on Saturday.

Buoyed by successive wins in previous pre-season games against non-league opponents, the Addicks found Bilbao a far tougher proposition.

Spanish international and Bilbao skipper Joseba Etxeberria gave them a ninth-minute lead, rounding off a sweeping move with a fine finish.

Fernando Llorente missed a 37th-minute sitter for the visitors when clean through on goal.

Charlton should have equalised when they were awarded a 40th-minute penalty after Jerome Thomas was tripped by Andoni Iraola.

Thomas picked himself up to take the resulting penalty but sent his shot against the base of a post.

Referee Lee Probert had his work cut out at times and in the 42nd minute was surrounded by tetchy Bilbao players following an innocent clash of heads between Jonjo Shelvey and Llorente.

Bilbao were winning no friends with their strong-arm approach and in the 70th minute the referee cautioned Aitar Ocia for a tackle on Thomas.

Within minutes, Ocia was substituted. Worse was to follow for the visitors when substitute Aritiz Aduriz was sent off following an incident with Amdy Faye.

Though manager Alan Pardew constantly reshuffled his side with substitrutes, Charlton were short on creativity.

Charlton: Elliot; Semedo (Moutaouakil 57), Hudson (Fahy 65 mins), Fortune, Youga; Wagstaff (Sam 46 mins), Racon (Wright 67 mins), Shelvy, Thomas; Varney, Gray (Basey 57 mins).

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