CHERRIES' preparations for today's clash at Charlton were interrupted after the squad was caught up in chaotic scenes on the M25 following a road accident yesterday.

A lorry crashed through the central reservation and hit a car on the opposite carriageway between junctions seven (M23) and eight (A217) just after 4pm.

The players had been stuck for four hours when the Echo telephoned midfielder Mark Molesley at 8pm, but police warned motorists part of the motorway could be closed for as long as seven hours.

The team coach eventually got off the M25 at around 10.30pm, with boss Lee Bradbury telling the Echo he expected to arrive at the squad's othernight base at around midnight.

Molesley, speaking from the hard shoulder, told the Echo: "We're moving about 20 yards at a time and people are starting to say silly things now like we should walk to Charlton. It's a bit of a nightmare and we're not going anywhere fast."

The players killed some time with a game of two-touch on the hard shoulder, with defenders Warren Cummings and Shaun Cooper both tweeting pictures from the side of the road.

Londoner Molesley added: "We've just been having a little game of football on the hard shoulder, which has been okay.

"I'm not actually sure where we are, but it's somewhere in Surrey. I usually go the other way round the M25 to be honest!"

Cherries chairman Eddie Mitchell, meanwhile, told the Echo the club was considering asking for a delayed kick-off, depending how long the squad remained stranded.

But the Charlton official website moved quickly to suggest such a request would not be granted by the police, who would only consider a delayed kick-off in the interests of safety.