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  • Writer's pictureBy Dan Evans

Charlton boss Holden vows to keep improving following end of winning run

Charlton Athletic manager Dean Holden was keen to stress the improvements that have been made in his first four weeks at the Valley following Saturday’s defeat to Bolton Wanderers.

Despite a well-worked Albie Morgan equaliser at the start of the second half, the Addicks saw a run of three League One wins in a row come to an end due to goals from Aaron Morley and Dion Charles.

It was also the first home defeat that Holden has suffered since he took charge just before Christmas, but there was little indication that he will allow it to halt the progress the club is making under his stewardship.

“The 90 minutes has shown what I’ve seen in my four weeks in the job,” he explained. “I think there was a lot of good stuff, and some stuff that we need to eradicate and keep working hard on.

“We can’t get too down; we have to keep improving. Four weeks ago, we were 18th and fighting at the bottom of the table. We’ve gotten ourselves away from that.”

Morley’s brilliant fourth-minute free-kick set Bolton up to control long spells of the first half, but Charlton were in the ascendency following Morgan’s equaliser and only a defensive mix-up allowed Charles to decide the contest.

Holden revealed that there was nothing spectacular about his half-time team talk: “The message was to get up against them and get in their faces. Stop shadow boxing. There wasn’t anything too grand (said at half-time), it was just taking care of the basics.

“We were much more like ourselves in the second half. We got on the front foot, forced them into errors. We played forward. We ran forward.

“For 25 minutes I don’t think there is any doubt that we had the momentum in the game,” he added.

“I’m disappointed that we lost because we came in with high hopes but that period at the start of the second half showed that we can go toe to toe with a really good team.”

The 43-year-old confirmed that Charlton intend to be busy in the transfer market until deadline day on Tuesday but he planned to remain solely focused on the on-field challenges ahead.

“I’m sure it (the transfer window) will go right to the wire, it always does,” he said, “we need to trim the squad but ideally we’d look to add as well.”

“We’ll just keep getting on with our job. We need to take care of the next game. Sitting here and saying that we just want to stay up or we want to go for the play-offs, it doesn’t matter.

“We’ve just got to put the work in every day, try to win the next game and then the one after that. Then suddenly you’re getting closer.

“There’s huge ambition at this football club. There’s a lot of work to do and that’s so exciting.”

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