Report | Charlton Athletic U23s 3 Swansea City U23s 4
Ali Al-Hamadi scored a hat-trick as Swansea City Under-23s overcame an experienced Charlton Athletic in an entertaining Professional Development League South encounter at Princes Park.
The Iraqi-born forward marked only his second appearance since October with a first treble for the development side, who twice came from behind to record their first victory in nine games.
Jon Grey made three changes to the side that drew with Queens Park Rangers last week. Lewis Webb replaced Jamie Searle in goal, while Harry Jones and Josh Edwards returned from injury to make their first appearances in four and five months respectively.
Charlton had won four of their last six matches and fielded three first-team players in Akin Famewo, Albie Morgan and Alex Gilbey, and the hosts were awarded a penalty after just four minutes when Webb felled Gilbey in the box.
But the Swansea keeper made amends as he guessed correctly to deny Charles Clayden from 12 yards out.
However, Charlton did draw first blood in the 17th minute with Samuel Oguntayo firing in from close range after the Swans had failed to deal with a corner.
Nevertheless, the visitors equalised just after the half-hour mark with Al-Hamadi drilling home from the edge of the box for his second goal of the season.
A set-piece proved to be the Swans’ undoing again in the 62nd minute, with Junior Quitirna capitalising by slamming the ball past Webb.
But Grey’s side responded in emphatic fashion with three goals in the space of 10 minutes.
First, Al-Hamadi calmly equalised from the penalty spot in the 71st minute after one of the trialists was fouled in the box.
The same trialist put the visitors in front just three minutes later, as his long-range strike somehow squeezed under the dive of Nathan Harvey.
And Al-Hamadi completed his hat-trick with nine minutes remaining; latching onto a neat through ball from substitute Ben Lloyd before slotting into the far corner.
The forward then put the ball in the net at the other end of the field, albeit unwittingly, as a cross bounced back off him and over the line to give Charlton hope in the final two minutes.
However, the visitors held on for a hugely creditable three points.
Swans U23s: Lewis Webb; Harry Jones, Cameron Evans, Jake Thomas (Scott Butler, ht), Cameron Congreve; Daniel Williams, Ryan Bevan; Ali Al-Hamadi, Josh Edwards (Ben Lloyd, 60), Trialist; Trialist (Adrian Akande, 70).
Subs not used: Jamie Searle, Joel Cotterill.