Limerick and English League One side Charlton Athletic played out an entertaining friendly at the Markets Field on Tuesday night, in what can only be described as a game of two halves.
Charlton got off to an excellent start, controlling possession in the first half and taking a two-goal lead into the break courtesy of Joe Aribo and Josh Magennis.
But it was the hosts that came out with guns blazing in the second half with goals from Stephen Kenny, Shane Tracy and Chiedozie Ogbene to wrap up a well-deserved victory for Neil McDonald’s side.
In what was the second of the London side's three games during their pre-season tour of Ireland, the open pitch at the Markets Field seemed suited to a lively Charlton Athletic side.
The former Premier League side, currently managed by Karl Robinson, opened the scoring when Aribo met a corner with his head after his initial low strike was pushed wide by Limerick’s Hall.
The Addicks’ second goal came only eight minutes later when captain Jason Pearce managed to get to the ball ahead of a stranded Freddy Hall in the Limerick goal, and striker Magennis headed the ball over the Bermudian after a well worked free-kick cross from Cameron Stewart.
Charlton remained unchanged at half time as McDonald introduced Killian Brouder, Lee-J Lynch, Tony Whitehead and Stephen Kenny to a tired looking Limerick side.
It was the latter who pulled one back for the hosts after an intended cross to the back post managed to hit the back of the net to the shock of Dillion Phillips.
Hall continued to keep his side in the game and it was the hosts that went up the other end and scored after a wonderful save from the Limerick goalkeeper that denied Magennis, who had looked in an offside position.
Four minutes shy of the hour mark, it was 2-2 as Tracy stood up and curled a superb free-kick into the top corner off the crossbar.
Despite the resurgence from the home side, Charlton continued to press and minutes after Limerick’s equaliser the visitors nearly resorted their lead but it was Hall who was the hero again, diving low to deny Karlan Ahearne-Grant.
Despite creating several chances in the remaining minutes of the game, it wasn’t to be for the south-east London side as substitute Chiedozie Ogbene broke down the right and fired into the far corner from with a low shot from a tight angle to make it 3-2 to the Super Blues.
Charlton continue their pre-season tour of Ireland with the final of their three games taking place on Wednesday against First Division side UCD.
Limerick will have to wait until their home game in two weeks against Sligo Rovers after their game against Shamrock Rovers has been postponed due to Rovers’ participation in the Europa League.
Limerick: Freddy Hall; Shane Costelloe (Trialist 60), Joe Crowe (Killian Brouder 46), David O’Connor (Tony Whitehead 46), Shane Tracy; Ian Turner (Stephen Kenny 46), Shane Duggan (Lee-J Lynch 46), Paul O’Conor (Bastien Hery 60), Henry Cameron (Dean Clarke 60); Chris Mulhall (Garbhán Coughlan 60), John O’Flynn (Chiedozie Ogbene 60).
Subs not used: Brendan Clarke (GK), Rodrigo Tosi, Seán McSweeney.
Charlton Athletic: Dillion Phillips (Ashley Maynard-Brewer 72); Regan Charles-Cook, Jason Pearce (Sarr 61), Karlan Ahearne-Grant, Aaron Barnes (Jackson 61); Cameron Stewart (Ceballos 46), Joe Aribo (Teixeira 61), Erzi Konsa (Bauer 61), Andrew Crofts (Dijksteel 61); Tony Watt (Clarke 55), Josh Magennis (Marshall 61).
Subs not used: None.
Referee: Graham Kelly.
Attendance: 1,100 (estimate).
ExtraTime.ie Player of the Match: Freddy Hall (Limerick).