Watford Under 23s were beaten 3-0 away from home by Charlton Athletic yesterday afternoon.

First-half goals from Kareem Isiaka, James Vennings and Johl Powell gave the young Hornets too much of a mountain to climb after the break, but they still remain top of the table with a five point lead, regardless.

The Addicks caused problems right from the off, particularly through left-back Alfie Doughty, whose shot flashed just wide of the mark early on.

Doughty was involved again soon after when the hosts scored the game's opening goal. The nippy defender's cross was turned in at the near post by Isiaka inside ten minutes.

A second was added midway through the first-half when Jay Mingi was tripped in the box and Vennings converted from the spot.

Watford were struggling to deal with an imposing Charlton attack, with Erhun Oztumer beginning to make his presence known with a series of flicks and passes that split the visitors' defence open with alarming regularity.

One such pass over the top found Powell, who volleyed home a third just before the half-hour mark.

Despite an improved second-half display, there was little for Nathan Harness to deal with in the Addicks goal and all three points stayed at the Valley.