Tuesday 28 December 2010

Utter Farce

                          Brian would be well impressed by events at The Valley on Boxing Day
On Boxing Day I left home at 9am and returned at 3pm following a totally wasted 6 hours. That's 6 hours I'll not be getting back much like the money spent on food, drink, lottery tickets and programmes.

Who's to blame ? Well,  the club would have you believe the pantomime villain is Andy D'urso. Really ? Is he totally to blame ? I think the club has put a wonderful spin on things.

Given the late, late cancellation you'd not expect Paddy, Parky, Keithy or anyone else associated with the club to say anything other than that the game could have gone ahead. Whether they were right or wrong is pretty immaterial.

You've got to wonder why there wasn't a ptich inspection at 10am at the very latest. And that should have meant one final decision. Forgetting the likes of myself, the Saints fans were travelling a long way without the option of public transposrt too.

Never mind your Friday ptich inspection which was always a pointless exercise. If that ref had declared it unfit then I doubt it'd have been called off as it clearly wasn't on the morning of the game but that didn't happen.

Only one man's opinion counted despite whatever we may think of him. Someone should have insisted on that 10am at the latest final pitch inspection.

I checked the website before leaving and via my mobile whilst travelling down but no mention of any pitch inspections or anything to suggest the game was in any doubt. Radio 5 Live was on for the journey's duration but no mention of a ptich inspection at any stage. Surely the club should have made every effort to get that message across on a day when there were many cancellations and so few games going ahead.

No announcements once at the ground ( I was there from 11.15am ). The only one I heard was the one that said the game was off when I was in Bartrams. Only then because I was standing directly by a speaker. Even then I think it was delivered by " whispering " Ted Lowe !

Many people in Bartrams didn't hear that and were totally unaware 10 to 15 minutes after the game's cancellation.

That lack of and sub-standard communication from the club isn't good enough. As I said whatever we think of Mr D'urso and subsequently his decision, it was only his view that counted. That this mess happened at this time of year only exacerbated the situation.

The club has the mobile numbers of season ticket holders, is it too much to hope that a text could have been sent to keep folk updated. No doubt costs will be cited especially at a time when our lovely new website highlights an enthusiasm to bleed you dry for any information you may want. So what against the loss of good will of many fans...... a small price to pay.

I could go on a rant about the club's inconsistent policy towards the fall and rise of the rate of vat but won't. I think it's a sad indictment of the direction the club is heading.

On top of all of the above and a nod towards poor communication again..............an article in the Boxing Day programme talks of the game against Swindon being on the Tuesday as both managers have agreed to play then in order to give the players an extra day off after playing on the Saturday even though I thought Sky dictated otherwise.  Everything else I've seen suggests that it's still on for the Monday at 5.05pm. Now, like Coronation Street's Mavis Riley, I don't really know........

Given the game, I assume, will be on telly on a bank holiday on another cold day do I travel down ? Hmmmm.............guess I won't be the only one giving that some thought !

Saturday 25 December 2010

Merry Christmas !

                                          All the best people wear red and white
Merry Christmas everyone !

The takeover didn't complete yesterday but then I guess as seasoned Charlton fans we never really expected that it would. It's not the Charlton way eh ?

Hopefully our boys won't over indulge today and we will witness a better performance tomorrow than the last two.

I wish everyone a peaceful and enjoyable day with family and / or friends.

Monday 13 December 2010

Not the Sunday we had in mind......

                                A very different sundae was on show at the Valley yesterday...........

Arghhhhhhhhh ! What to make of that ? It was one of those days........you might say Hagen Daz when you knew after 10 minutes that you'd wished you hadn't bothered.........clearly the players did ! However, I didn't dessert ! No, indeed I stayed the ( 3rd ) course.

Added to it all, it was as cold as ice ! To play so badly against a team like WALLSall whose confidence was wafer thin was so poor. I couldn't help recall when Millwall beat them last season............the LIONS MADE short work of them that day.

To top it all it's a game we'd win 99 times out of a hundred ( and thousands ) but the defence was flakey !

The performance was more Tom and Jerry than Ben and Jerry. It went down like a bombe. As they say in parts of the states.......we were frappe. For the goal the defence was all over the glace.

I declined a sherbet at half time opting for a cup of kulfi although that didn't cheer me but it'll help the club's catering takings with me playing the PROFITerole.

So the Saddlers scooped the 3 points and we're left with nothing...........not very ice that !

My God ! This is what a bad defeat does to me ! I bet it leaves you cold. Enough already, no more ice cream " puns ".

Never look back wishing Sir Lennie once said..............so we'll gloss over that and turn our attentions to the Paint Pot Trophy.

BTW I see that Matt won x-factor...................oh no it's happening again and we haven't even lost yet......

Sunday 12 December 2010

Walsall F C

                                         As if things weren't bad enough for the Saddlers....... !

My trip to SE7 today is my second part of sporting action this weekend. Last night I saw Northamtpon Saints play Cardiff.........well I say Cardiff but really it was Saints v Dan Parks as the unerring boot of the Scotsman produced all the points for the Blues. Dan did miss one kick but given that was about 10 metres inside his own half he could be forgiven for showing that he is human after all.

Walsall pitch up at the Valley today. Everything points to a home win against the team bottom of the league and a return to second place, one point behind The Seagulls. However, this is Charlton and we all know it probably won't be like that.

The match gives echoes of a home game against Swindon  a few years ago. I recall we lost 1-0 courtesy of a rare gaffe from Kiely following the only attack The Robins had all afternoon. Should the presence of another bird, a swift, on the club badge be seen as an omen I wonder.

The replay win over Luton was most welcome as is the match at White Hart Lane in terms of finance. That we are managing to win when not playing well is a good sign.......long may it continue. I don't think any of us cares about the manner of victories just that they keep coming. If as Steve Brown said on Thursday that without invesmtent and promotion we are in the words of Private Fraser " doomed " then that really is all that matters.

The probable return of Peter Varney has been most welcome news. The best cheif exec we've ever had in my view on a number levels. Highly regarded by many football folk this is a real shot in the arm. Hopefully there'll be no problems with the takeover. I've no idea if the group he's heading loads of cash or not......I'm not getting the impression that they have much. However, that's largely immaterial as it's more important that we have someone at the helm who can run the club in proper fashion and make the most of what we have.

Other clubs, dare I say, Millwall, have achieved promotion on leeser crowds and turnover than us so it's not an impossible task. We need to be prudently run and following all the cutbacks the club has seen in reason seasons then financial stability shouldn't prove beyond Varney's capabilites.

This has been quite a few days in the world of football.........just when you thought nothing could be more bizarre than the recent fiasco with both the 2018 and 2022 world cups, up pops Newcastle again ! Always good for laugh on the domestic front, they've surpassed even their own high comic standards. Shearer was always going to be a failure as a manger ( I never liked him as a player ) and so it proved but the Mags still wanted him to manage in the Championship. It was to their eternal good fortune that he said no and that they stumbled upon Hughton.

Getting rid of Hughton was one crass error and then appointing " Super Al " another............then going on to give him a five and half year contract, well words fail me ! That's going to cost them a pretty penny when he goes in 12 to 18 months time. We all know that Al likes the squeeze out the last drop of blood......." he'd take the drippings from your nose " as my mum used to say, an epxression that seems tailor made eh !

I love the fact that he was happy to take credit for the win yesterday against a poor Liverpool side. " We made a couple of changes "...............and got lucky he should have gone on to say !

The only good to come out of this sorry episode is that a decent bloke like Hughton will find his stock has never been higher and he should soon return to managment and that we can all enjoy Pardew making a real mess of things. Expect the call for another " Messiah " to echo round Sid James's Park very soon.

Come On You Reds !

Friday 26 November 2010

Who Wants To Be A Milliner

Apparently her name is Alice...........

A welcome relief from league action tomorrow sees us take on Luton. I'm quite pleased we're playing them as several folk I know are Hatters fans.......not least my next door neighbour who's travelling down with me tomorrow. Last time he was at the Valley the game was decided 6-5 on penalties in our favour I think. I'd settle on something a little less exciting tomorrow if we win..........a boring 1-0 is ok by me !

I'm hoping to give Crossbars a try prior to the match given that it's free. The last time I went in there was when it first opened and I'm keen to see what there is that would make folk part with some wonga to go in there.....what makes it so much better than a free Bartrams ?

Hopefully the Courage Best is on offer there.........quite enjoyed that last week.

Saturday was not a great performance but the result was everything of course. Tuesday was different and 99 times out of a hundred we'd have had a convincing win but then we've got to balance that against games we've drawn or won this season that we didn't deserve anything from.

Not sure why we decided to attack the covered end in the first half on Tuesday. I always prefer us doing that in second and thought it was an unwritten rule for us.  Hope we don't do that again........it just don't seem right.

Whilst the cup isn't our top priority it'd be good to win and go on to hopefully a big tie that would provide much needed funds. I'm sure that Luton will feel the same way and I sincerely hope that they can regain league status soon. I felt that they were treated very badly by the league following their entry into administration.

Injuries, suspensions and cup-tied players means a very different looking side tomorrow. However, I hope we see some keen and hungry players with a point to prove. It'd be especially good to see some of the youngsters who will almost inevitably be on the bench at least.

I've not seen us in the cup for some time now and am really looking forward to this one. It promises to be an entertaining game and I hope it lives up to my expectation. Let's pray that fans turn out in force to support the decision to open the covered end. Hopefully we get a good atmosphere too.

Come On You Reds !

Saturday 20 November 2010

The Bland Leading The Bland

                                                  They sure know how to sell themselves !

Drab, hard to read, nothing interesting, easy to navigate and no remotely useful comment or information..........sound familiar ? Yes, that's Nothing Else to a tee !

It's not easy to maintain such a low level of blogging.....no indeed it's hard work and needs time. Sadly Nothing Else has been rather busy of late and even the office junior has been restricted to a mere 1,000 hours on FIFA 2010/1/2/3/4 or whatever the latest edition is.

Suffice to say that today's blogette ( ? ) is short even if not sweet.

A cup win in midweek and who cares if we were poor and that the final score should probably should have read Elliot 1 Barnet 0, we're through to play Luton.....hooray !

Let's pray that we can maintain our purple patch with a win against Yeovil who I've a soft spot for after a rather splendid day at their place last season.

A later departure today leaves little time for pre-match sherberts but that doesn't mean that tomorrow's potential blogette will be any more coherent than usual..........we've standards to maintain !

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 14 November 2010

Mystic Meg

MM demonstrates her ball handling skills........perhaps she should have kept goal for Posh yesterday

My pessimistic mood and heavy defeat predicition were, thankfully, wide of the mark. I had a real Victor Meldrew feeling yesterday morning and too at half time in a different kind of way...............I don't believe it !

Ante-prandials were consumed in the wonderful Palmerston Arms which served very toothsome ales. All very pleasant. Loads of friendly Posh fans in there too with no hint of aggravation which is always welcome. A few chips en route to the ground were pleasant and passing The Happy Valley Chinese takeaway had me wondering if that it was actually going to be our day.

Like the players, the Addicks fans seemed well up for this one and were in good voice. The lads came out of the blocks like I've not seen them for many a month.....that was pleasantly unexepected as indeed was the half time scoreline of 4-0 ! Wow !

Having missed the trip to Carlisle I'd not seen us score 4 away from home since goodness knows when. One fan was reminiscing about 1966 as the last time he could recall it. The full time 5 goals and I was fairly confident I'd never seen us score that many possibly even at the Valley ( I missed the Southampton premier game.......... away on a badly timed holiday ! ).

Elliott seems to have confidence restored and made one of a few good saves early on yesterday. I have to say Doherty played well and won a few important headers with Dailly again mopping up when needed. Franics won a few headers too but still looked clumsy.

Martin was certainly in the mood and played ever so well when he replaced Joe. He and Benson did brilliantly in chasing down the ball for the fifth goal.

Good thinking by the CAFC management saw Semedo, under instructions, pick up a fifth booking for time wasting that rules him out of Tuesday but available for the Yeovil game.

I bumped into Ketts at half time both of us a little shocked at the scoreline. As he says someone is due some credit for the upturn since the Brighton debacle and his belief that Mr Murray may have had an influence is probably correct. 

Parky has certainly got turned it around since the Seagulls slaughter. I remain to be totally convinced but you've got to acknowledge the results since then.

A couple of post match beers in the nearby Peacock was very pleasant and again some very good natured  Posh fans. To a man they are all supportive of their manager and believe that if they can get the defence sorted they'll do well.

The majority of results went our way yesterday and second place is ours. Who'd have thought that after Gus hopped on the bus departing the Valley a month ago.

Where we will finish up I wonder ? Little point in asking me...........I'm off for a chat with her of the crystal ball....... 

Saturday 13 November 2010

Posh Away

She's real purdy..well, yes, actually she was...

Wouldn't mind bumping into the lovely Joanna today but somehow feel that's unlikely. No, we don't have to be Posh to be privileged but that's what we are in supporting CAFC. I'm right aren't I ? Life wouldn't be the same following Chelsea or somesuch always winning at home and usually away, always in the Prem, boring, lifeless, souless, unprincipled beings representing your team. No siree, it's much more fun following the Addicks.

BTW the new website ? WTF ! More like webs*ite I'm afraid. No surprise in it's format cos it's the same as the other mindnumbingly boring ones thay've to every other team that uses them. Part of our identity went with that I'm sorry to say. Would have been nice ot have been forewarned......that was anasty saurprise on Thursday.

I'm keeping those posititve thoughts of the joys of following the Addicks to the fore as I head off on a relatively short journey to London Road today. The office junior has been given the day off following his big away day at Barnet last week. He enjoyed a few shandies too many at the Old Red Lion I'm sorry to say. However, he did report on events but sadly I didn't get time to post them during a busy week.

I was disappointed to hear of Addicks fans ( idiots really ) bashing a train with metal bars at Euston, however, plod caught up with them at Barnet and they were thankfully whisked away. Junior advises that we played pretty well save for Franics ( quelle surprise ) and Abbott which isn't good as we may well need him and surely he has a point to prove and should be up for it.

Despite my reservations over added games and the paint pot itself, I was quietly pleased with our midweek win over the Shrimpers. I've yet to see Racon's goal but believe it was rather good.

So to today's game which promises to be our toughest away game yet. We know the Posh possess a very potent strike threat. Indeed I recall we tried to sign both some years ago........they turned us down ! How very dare they ! We were alright then too...........can't see them joining any time soon.

However, their defence has a tad Welsh national symbol of late.........a bit leeky.......boom boom ! Let's hope we are able to exploit it.

I'm in miserable old git mode and see nothing but a defeat and potentially a big one at that. What worries me is Parky's seeming inabilty to make the correct changes and at the right time when things go wrong. Let's hope we get it right today.

If fit I'd like to see Solly in for Francis and Fortune for Doherty who appears to be a latterday Mooney.......he shall play come what may !

Here's hoping we get at least something from the game as it's very important not to lose although that is a partially negative mindset that I hope our boys don't go into the game with.

I'll be seeking a decent real ale pub for ante-prandials and The Palmerston Arms is looking favourite at present.

For those of you going like me I wish you all a very good afternoon and may we return having trousered 3 points.

Cone On You Reds !

Saturday 6 November 2010

It Won't Happen Again.........will it ?

                             Today's Nothing Else reporter...........give him a wave if you see him.

Sadly I can't be at today's game which is a shame cos I'd like to bee ( ha ! ha ! ) there. No, Nothing Else having already been banned from the board room subsequently received total ban from the ground itself following some comments we made about Barnet. Therefore, I'm spending the day with my mate David in the East End listening to commentary from Underhill and some game in Birmingham.

There are ways round these things, however, Nothing Else has pulled out all the stops and dug deep into our reserves ( well, a bag of toffees and a copy of the 2002 Beano Annual to be preicse ) to send the office junior ( pictured above but travelling incognito ) to report back on the game.

Someone once said ( to be fair he said every week on his t.v. show )  it's a funny old game and how right he was ! I wonder what odds you'd have got on the Addicks winning the next 3 games after the Brighton debacle. Whatever the manner of those wins and there were varying degrees of success it's been fantastic. I remain to be convinced of Parky and his overall managerial skills and abilities but you've got to acknowledge an improvement in attitude, performance and consistency from the lads.

Following Wednesday's away trip, I recommend parking and indeed, drinking at the cricket club should you visit the County Ground again.....all rather pleasant and reasonable.

There's still plenty of room for improvement and also team selection with the Addicks but it's better to enjoy this upturn in our fortunes than dwell too much on that.

Today sees us return to F.A. Cup action and it gives the players a chance to redeem themselves following last year's shocker. I'm fairly confident we can avoid a repeat of defeat to a lower league side. I'm also confident we can do this whilst resting one or two regulars. Therefore, I'm hoping that Parky leaves some out but wholesale changes are probably not in the best interests of the team.

We come up against the Count today and I hope and can't why he won't get anything other other than a warm reception from the away contingent. He always gave his best and I remember him soldiering on after a nasty blow to the old wedding tackle away at Stockport on a rather cold day last year........I think we all shared a bit of the pain on that day........not nice.

Let's hope for a comfortable win, no injuries or suspensions and an easy home tie in round 2 that hopefully would serve up a lucritive 3rd round game.........we can but hope.

Come On You Reds !

Monday 1 November 2010

Robins next up !

                                                      Swindon - the home of the superhero

After Saturday's uplifting first half display against the Owls, the Robins are looming ever large on the horizon. Let's hope we can beating the birds but not in a premiership footballer kind of way.

Saturday was altogether better fayre from the lads than that of the previous home game. The second half was a bit of a non-event but the first saw a committed and team performance as we've witnessed in many a week.

Had it not been for Weaver we'd have been 3 or 4 up within the half hour but the law of sod dictated that he'd have a good game.

Not sure why Doherty played again or why Wagstaff and Benson weren't subbed in the second as neither was offering much. However, beggars can't be choosers and the win was an improvement.

As much as Wednesday were poor this was a performance of greater effort from almost every player.

Martin won't be playing tomorrow following his fifth yellow card of the season. That only differs from the others he's collected in that it was for diving........the remainder seem to have come from arguing with referees.

Hopefully Doherty will be on the bench and Fortune will return.

I'm going tomorrow and am looking forward to it. Hopefully we can get a win that will propel us further up the league..........fingers crossed !

Come On You Reds !

Wednesday 27 October 2010

The Owls

" I've just got married "
" You twit, to who ! "

Sheffield Wednesday visit the Valley on Saturday for an interesting encounter. Years ago this would have been an ornithologist's delight at a time when we were the Robins. Plenty to crow about but no accusations of players feathering their nest.......just good old honest pros........no, not that sort Wayne !

Managers would be wondering about who to play on the wing. Should they shell out on new players or can the present ones crack it. Enough, enough.....talk is cheep !

This match of course sees the return of Nicky Weaver. Rather than being heralded as " Charlton's number 1 " as he once was I'm guessing we may hear a reprise of the chants he used to get when he visited us in a City shirt. Personally I hope we don't, not that I have any great affection for the man. I thought he was a decidedly average keeper who was clueless on crosses, slow off his line with poor distribution to boot. I just think it's unnecessary to abuse him, there are plenty of other former players far more deserving of some heckling.

The Owls arrive in 4th place in the league despite some erratic form this season. Like us they have lost at Brentford, rather more surpirsingly though as they were flying ( sorry ) at the time. They've been here ( as in the third tier ) before of course and like many other clubs, it took them a while to get out of it. Again, like us they are not flush with the cash at present, however, I'm sure someone will buy them as they represent an attractive proposition.

Last week's late winner spared Parky some more detailed examination of how we could blow a 3 goal lead such was the relief. In my view playing Doherty didn't help ( what had he done to merit inclusion ) and a change of formation before they scored their first might have made a difference.

As Nelson from Views from an Iberian Valley observes their defence was already makeshift before kick off and two injuries inside the first 30 minutes didn't help their cause. That and the fact that we conceded 3 goals has, like many others, helped me rein in my excitement or belief that we may have " turned a corner ".

I live in the hope that Parky may go 3-5-2 but it'll never happen. I'd say we've nothing to lose by it ( other than a game of football ) and sometimes you have to be brave. I can't see what we miss by not having Francis in defence ( although last week he looked better going forward than at any time during his CAFC career maybe something in that ).

Fortune should, of course, return in place of Doherty and Benson must play in a more advanced role. Joe should partner him on last week's evidence.

Another huge away following will ensure some atmosphere again. I hope that if it does go pear-shaped again that we don't get a load of booing or abuse directed at Parky. Never very constructive or nice in my view. I think registering your disatisfaction by leaving early is more productive.

I don't think Parky is man who'll get us into the Championship or sadly, at present, even into the play-offs. I've no wish to see us lose on Saturday or at any time and let's hope we get a win. Just don't think he has what it takes with a group of players who he's largely chosen and should do a lot better.

The worry is what will happen at Christmas time. We face the possibility of losing both Fortune and Fry ( sounds like a comedy double act ) and I don't think we can afford to. Who might be sold in the transfer window is also of worry. We have to hope that come the ned of the year we are in a play-off spot at least and that that may go some way to encouraging them to stay.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 24 October 2010

Away Win At Last

A Benson double helped the Addicks to all 3 points

We all know there's a fine line between success and failure and nothing demonstrates that better than yesterday's game. It could have ended up 3-3 or even a 4-3 defeat for the Addicks but thankfully we came away with the win.

Fair play to Benson who scored two more goals and is starting to show why Parky bought him. He's not a favourite of mine but perhaps that's because he's not been used to best effect as suggested by his former manager. Leave him up and around the box and it seems he'll get goals or be in there with a chance. Not something we do most of the time.

I'm guessing that at 3-3 yesterday we all feared the worst with a repeat of Shrewsbury. Fortunately that didn't happen.

Francis had a part in the first two goals, no idea what his defending was like but he did well there. Joe appears to have had a good game. So too, Wagstaff who as we know needs to be more consistent.

We did well in scoring 4 goals away, that at any ground is good and particulalry at Carlisle where away goals have been thin on the ground. I'm not getting carried away though, we need to look at how we nearly blew it and I make no apology for it. Carlisle were already hit by injuries and lost another two players in the first 30 minutes. This particulalry hit their already makeshift defence. It was not unreasonable to expect we might and perhaps should make something out of that.

The defensive errors were there for all to see. I cant understand how Doherty keeps his place. He was shocking against Brighton and yesterday too it seems. Not sure what he was doing for a couple of goals as he looked to have lost his player. Ponderous is my description of Doherty of late and it looked like it again. In my opinion Fortune should be in there. I hope he returns on Saturday.

For me the question marks over Parky remain, I'd love to be proved wrong and that he gets the team playing winning football in the next few games. I just doubt it. Yes, players need to take some of the blame. However, the manager must get them organised and instill some self-belief.

The Owls on Saturday present another test, let's hope we can pass it. If we do and we can build on it and improve, I'll be happy to hold up my hand and say I'm wrong.

Saturday 23 October 2010

Carlisle Away

 Hmmm burger and chips.........has Parky had his ?

Carlisle next up for our boys and we'll do well to do anything other than lose after the last week's performance and our record on the road since Orient all that time ago.

I can still recall the misplaced sense of optimism after that game. Sadly underperforming players added to Parky's mystifying team selection and tactics have seen us fall away considerably since then.

Injuries leave Parky little room for manoevure so it ought to be largely predictable. I assume Fry comes in at left back and Jackson moves up to left hand side midfield. Hopefully Fortune partners Dailly in the centre of defence. McCormack may come in for Racon and the under-used Joe may appear up front with Abbott probably losing out. I guess Martin will appear ahead of Wagstaff on the right.

The above wouldn't be my starting eleven but Parky's pick rarely are !

Hopefully Parky has done his homework this week and in addition passed on his discoveries to the players. With The Owls, The Robins and The Posh looming large on the horizon we've chosen the worst possible time to be so awful.

One can but hope that last week was as bad as it gets and that the lads and Parky can raise their game to meet these challenges head on.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 17 October 2010

It's deja vu all over again

Press rewind
My immediate thoughts after yesterday's game were that Parky has to go. Nice bloke may be but clearly looking increasingly clueless with little to no hope of getting us promoted. However, after a night's sleep and chance to gather some rational thoughts.............I'm absolutely convinced he's got to go.

I think our manager may be guilty of not doing his homework or if he did, either not sharing his findings with the team or failing to get the message across.

The two corners in quick succession in the first half being a case in point. No one picked up the man on the edge of the area for either one. Hmmm that was blindingly obvious before it happened the first time and there's no excuse when you have everyone back to " defend " it.

How should players defend a short corner ? I'm sure the Year 6's in my school could answer that one. You need two players to go out.........not one note, as the other two will simply pass the ball until one of them is able to deliver a telling cross. I witnessed us exhibit that poor defending too on more than one occasion yesterday.

You needn't have left the comfort of your living room to know what Lua Lua did from a free kick last week against Bournemouth but all hope went when we allowed him to score again in similar vein.

Some may argue that the players have to take responsibility for the disaster that was yesterday. To a certain extent true but it's the manager who picks the team, decides the tactics and formation and yesterday, like farting in a lift, it was wrong on every level.

After midfielders, fullbacks do the most running in the team. Therefore, to pick the ageing Dailly to again play in that position was a crass decision. This was highlighted in no greater way than when Christian pushed the ball past their fullback but was unable to pick it up again as he was outpaced.

Aside from the above Parky disrupted his first choice centre back pairing to play Dailly there. Why do that ? As I remarked recently, Doherty has looked ponerous of late and he did again yesterday. Absolutely     shocking for the second goal......I know you get a bit more time in tier 3 but not that long I'm afraid.

You've got to ask why Fry didn't start. One of our best players and clearly possesses some quality and due to leave after Christmas.......hmmm wonder if he'll be back. Can't blame if he decides not to return........if he can't get into our team........!

I'd not have started with Benson but he has scored and clearly is quite effective in the box. However, that being the case why is it that he's the one coming deep to get the ball. Surely he should be trying to get on the end of Abbott flicks and knock ons. At the least he needs to be closer to the goal doesn't he given that he's not going to score outside the box !!!

What of yesterday's subsitutions ? Why on earth did the wardrobe monster come on ? What did he add ? Even I felt embarrassed for him as Lua Lua left him for dead. Point is it wasn't a positive substitution. We needed to win the game. We needed an attacking substitution be got a defensive one !

Is it too much to hope for that Parky could change our formation or style of play ? He must know how to combat a team playing 4-3-3. It was always the same when the keeper had the ball........classic formation with the two centre backs on the corner of the area and the full backs wider with Kish also free if needed. Our front two spent much of the afternoon chasing after the ball.

Our recent results of late are just not good enough. Dagenham should have been taken to the cleaners, we were poor first half against a Bentford team low on confidence and desperate for a result. We shaded it against a poor MK Dons team that again hadn't won in ages, without several key players and devoid of confidence.

On paper we have better players than Brighton ( Lua Lua aside ) sadly on grass it looked totally the opposite. The Seagulls played to a system and were well organised with the right players in the right positions. I was pleased that Kish both got a warm welcome and did well. He looked so comfortable yesterday.

The team still hasn't " gelled ", isn't playing to its potential and Parky still doesn't seem to know his best team. He simply has to go because we have the players to do so much better than this. Yesterday showed what soemone can achieve with a well organised and drilled side.

I know some will say we can't afford to sack him. Perhaps we should ask ourselves if we can afford not to !

Friday 15 October 2010

Brighton Rock Up

7-0 ! I should have known better ! Like the wedding cake it was all to end in tiers.

Saturday sees us play against the league leaders. I hold no particular grudge with the Seagulls but there are some bad memories. The day I got engaged we lost 7-0 away to the team then from the Goldstone Ground.........since the relationship, like recent Addicks managers, was subsequently a failure perhaps I should have taken note of the score.........the football gods were trying to tell me something !

However, it's not all bad news and I've enjoyed a few weekends in Brighton over the years which has seen visits to the nearby Dripping Pan to see Lewes play whilst quaffing a few pints of Harvey's and many an enjoyable night at the town's Komedia club seeing some of the best stand ups.

As Ketts suggests Parky faces something of a defensive dilema. It's such a shame that Solly got injured when did and in keeping with injuries to our players of late this one is taking a long time to recover from. I sometimes think our players would be better off with a straight forward broken leg as they'd be back in action quicker.........why is it our players are out for so long ? We now know that Youga is out for the season...unbelievable. I have real doubts he'll ever play for us or perhaps anyone again.

I can't see Parky going 3-5-2 so guess that the Wardrobe Monster will return at right back. I'd like to see Fortune and Dailly as the central pairing but reckon he'll opt for Doherty and bench Fortune. I'd go for Fry at left back but expect to see Jackson there instead.

Can't think we'll see anything other than Benson partnering Abbott or Martin. I still don't think Benson's all that but it's hard to argue against goals I guess. My preference remains for Abbott / Sodje and Martin but hey ho.

I think Poyet has done well in management and has a pretty good record and got no credit for the success Leeds had when he was there. He'll certainly be entertaining as I recently observed when the Seagulls played the Cobblers in the Carling Cup. He was very animated and took delight in winding up the locals although they had the last laugh as Northampton beat their higher league opponents.

I felt Brighton were quite a physical side that night and I think we can expect plenty of that on Saturday. However, I don't expect that Kish will be one of the main perpetrators. I'm pleased to see that he'll be back and hope he gets a decent welcome. Radistan was underated by most Addicks I felt. Never spectactular of course but an honest professional who did his job and gave it his all in a Charlton shirt.

Another player being reunited with a former team is Therry Racon. He played 8 games for the Seagulls at the tail end of the 2007-08 season. I wonder if he'll get a good reception from the away fans.....can't see why not.

Lua Lua is one to watch out for of course. Seems quite a talented played and should be good to watch.......let's hope not too good. Brighton did well to get him. I saw him on telly put in a pretty good shift for Newcastle ealier in the season. None of this bodes well for tomorrow.

I'm about as far removed from optimism as it's possible to be about tomorrow's game given our tepid performances against the basement teams. Hope springs eternal though eh ? Let's pray that the lads can up their game for the top of the league side. Perhaps us fans can do that too and it should be a cracking atmosphere to boot with Brighton having snapped up the full allocation.

Come On You Reds !

Tuesday 12 October 2010

Away at Home..................Park

 Francis was called away to do something off the pitch that he rarely does on it...........deliver.

Yes, our right back headed home to be at the birth of his child. It would seem to make sense not to disturb the first choice central pairing of Dailly and Fortune, however, Parky opted to move Dailly to right back and bring the of late, ponderous, Doherty back in. I'd have preferred to see Fry or even Llera come in.

Wagstaff again appears to have had a quiet game perhaps injury was the reason but bringing him off the bench would probably have avoided that and it's the best role for him. Martin made some impact when he came on and to me it seems crazy to leave the guy out of the side.

I was pleasantly surprised to see Benson score not once but twice. Clearly he's not going to score outside the box but a goal's a goal and you've got to be in there. I'd still have started with Abbott and Martin but it's hard to argue against goals albeit that Pawel and Lee might have done better.........we'll never know.

We were undone by poor defending from the throw and a terrific strike. As I understand it we played well and obviously battled back well from being behind twice.

Sadly our poor form away is costing us, just two or three more points gained outside the Valley would see us right up there. Hey ho ! Now we need to really play well in the next 5 league games against better opposition.

Let's hope we can do so and secure the results to get us to the top.

Friday 8 October 2010

Reidy ! Reidy !

                                 Let's hope our boys can make a monkey out of Reid P tomorrow

Every week we hear " Reidy ! Rediy ! " before our manager finally sees sense and brings on the great man. Tomorrow we may hear it from all corners of the ground as the " Home " fans chant their manager's name. Let's hope not though as the singing for our Reidy on its own would suggest the Addicks were on top with him having delivered another peach of a cross !

I took in my first Charlton paint pot trohpy game on Tuesday and my initial apathy disappated when I saw that both teams had named strong sides. Overlooking the first few minutes during which we conceded one of the worst goals ever ( blimey that's saying something ! ) we did well I thought.

Why Parky didn't start with Fortune and Dailly at the back I don't know as it was an ideal situation to try out the pairing. Doherty of late has been giving me childhood flashbacks and I half expect to hear Kent Walton's voice saying " greetings grapple fans " as Doherty attempts to wrestle another striker to the floor. He had a bloody go on Tuesday night ! Jackie Pallo sans hair !

At last Martin played in behind a lone striker who can hold the ball up for him. Sadly I think tomorrow Benson may return and Martin will be benched. Lee has received some criticism from some quarters but for me he is a class act and one of the few quality players we have. He has the ability to do things most of the rest in our side can't. He doesn't lack for effort either and keeps going. Where he played Tuesday is his best position for us, I hope he's back there soon and behind Abbott or Sodje.

Benson doesn't do it for me at all but I won't mind if he can prove me wrong, just can't see it though. Wagstaff will no doubt start as his goals have been a revelation and he is top scorer. He remains inconsistent and mostly ineffectual for me and I firmly believe the term " impact sub " was invented for him.  
               
I assume the wardrobe will keep his place in defence.............how long do we have to wait for Solly to return !

Can you believe that Plymouth are without 3 players on international duty. Imagine us having 3 players good enough to play international football ? Imagine us without 3 of our best ? We would no doubt get a hiding, whether we can inflict that on Argyle remains a mystery that will only be finally answered at 4.55pm tomorrow.

Let's hope that when that final whistle goes our Pete will again be feeling " grey ".......................

                                                        Ah yes I remember it well...............

Come On You Reds !

Monday 4 October 2010

MK Dons Part 2

A rarely seen tin of Johnstone's paint


I've often wondered what some companies and organisations get out of sponsoring various sporting events. Some are more high profile than others of course but some are so insignificant that you wonder if it's worth the outlay of cash.

The paint pot trophy must be a case in point. I'll confess to not being a diy enthusiast.......quite the opposite in fact. However, I've never seen a tin of Johnstone's in any diy store and neither has anyone I've ever asked about it. Even if I did see one and I was looking to buy paint I'd probably go for a pot of dulux over the aforementioned.........I don't know if it's any good.

I guess that the sponsorship must give Johnstone's some sort of return perhaps they secured the Forth Bridge conract on the back of it.....who knows.

All this mindless speculation is an attempt to avoid thinking too much about tomorrow night's high octane encounter with MK Dons and yes, I've got a ticket and yes, I'm going. Quite how many fellow Addicks will be there is anyone's guess. I think I might be part of Charlton's lowest ever away following. To be honest if I didn't live up here I wouldn't bother. However, I do and at £6 a ticket I thought I'd give it a go although I suspect I may come away thinking that's one evening I'll not get back again !

I don't care too much about whether we win, last week's league game was far more important. It does though give Parky a chance to experiment and do some wacky things. Perhaps he might start with Reid ! Perhaps he might not play the underperforming Benson and Wagstaff. Perhaps he might omit Francis. Perhaps he might play Martin in behind a lone striker who can win flick ons, hold up the ball and lay the ball of for him.

One can but hope. Let's hope that these two games watching from the stands will enable Parky to see the things that we lesser mortals can see from the comfort of our seats week in, week out.

If he does and he changes things and we start winning and in style maybe I'll go out and paint the town red...........not with a tin of Johnstone's though of course !

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 3 October 2010

The B's

The day started well with a comfortable journey from Milton Keynes Central station to Kew Bridge. Cross the road to the Waggon and Horses ( note that waggon is a variant spelling of wagon according to my dictionary ). This is an excellent pub with good food and a toothsome pint of London Pride. I'd recommend it for future visits to Brentford however, the landlady confirmed it's to be knocked down in December as a new pub is to be built by the river.................bo***cks ( b number 1 ) !

A leisurely stroll to the ground, programme purchased ( obviously Brentford are a wealthy club as the programme has a laminated cover, something we can't afford apparently ! ) squeezed our way onto the terracing. Good show of Addicks in good voice....all rather splendid........then the ref blew his whistle for kick off........bu**er !

Francis gave an immediate demonstration of his impressionist skills........it was bedroom furniture........" today I'm mostly being a wardrobe " and a heavy old oak one at that and riddled with woodworm too. Weston had little difficulty in skipping past him to get in an early rasping shot.......a portent of things to come.....bother !

Not long after goal number one arrived sadly scored by Alexander who in my opinion should have booked for winding up Addicks fans with his celebration. He joined by a Father Christmas look-a-like in the home stand who really ought to have known better. Last year's Bees fan, " you're not fit to be a dad " was lurking sheepishly at the back of the stand this year and was probably glad to this loon getting all the attention....bas**rds.

Like buses goal number two wasn't far behind as the Addicks continued to look clueless........bl**dy hell !

Mercifully half time came and only getting an extra pound in my change in error at the snack bar gave any remote cause to feel anything other than thoroughly pi**ed off !

Parky then made changes and had the sort of side he should have started with. How Wagstafff kept his place is beyond me. How Francis stayed on I'll never know. Why Fry was subbed is a mystery as he was playing ok and nothing got past him. Reid clearly should have started and Parky is the only connected with Charlton that doesn't seem to understand that. Benson is clearly not the answer and increasingly seems like a poor man's Luke Varney.........lots of running but too lightweight to do anything what so ever......blimey !

Nice guy though Parky is I'm afraid his time is nearly up unless something dramatic changes. We have the players to do so much better, they need better guidance than they're getting now. I know we can't afford to sack him so why not change his job title and make Kinsella the boss. 

It's still a mystery to me why when we don't have any money we have an assistant manager and a coach ? I'd like to know how those roles are defined !

All in all it's not looking good. At least there's the relief of the paint pot trophy on Tuesday. I wonder if Parky will try 3-5-2 although who to leave out of the previous back four is a real tester eh ?

Saturday 2 October 2010

Time to make like my blood group......

Proof that I still have a copy of the programme from my first Brentford game. I'm guessing the price of the programme has changed but has colour reached wast London yet ?

and Bee positive ! Of late I've not been happy with Parky's selections, formations and where he's playing certain players........e.g. Wagstaff on the left, Benson as the lone striker etc. After last Saturday I was seething but have taken Michael Winner's advice and calmed down.  

I'm endebted to Nelson from the excellent Views from an Iberian Valley blog for enlighteing me that our last win at Griffin Park was in 1980. I was there for that one and recall it as an important win during that promotion season. One always went into games with a feeling of optimism with Walsh and Elliott in the team.

I'll be there again today for one of my few away games this season. Aside from thinking you'd be hard pushed to keep track of the game given the saturation coverage of the Ryder Cup ( is the entire staff of BBC sport plus Nicky Campbell there I wonder ? ) the lure of a ground with a pub in each corner has proved too much ! If they lads can match the level of effort they showed on Tuesday and add some better passing and crossing then this a game we really ought to win.

I never make predictions as they can backfire and make one look silly so...............I'm going to say 2-1 to us today.

Come On You Reds !

Saturday 25 September 2010

Is this a dagger which I see before me ?

Shush ! Don't mention the Scottish Play by name !

Shakespeare walks into a pub. The landlord says " you're Bard ! "

Not so much a dagger as eleven of them today as we seek a return to winning ways. Last week I proffered that Parky tends to stick pretty much the same team week in, week out............I was way off the mark there folks.......how unusual I hear you cry.

However, my assertion that he doesn't include players when they're confident or just had a good game was correct. For me last week's team changes were a nonsense save for a couple of. He may have thought giving Worner another go in goal was a boost to his confidence and that Daniels needed more time to work with the defence but he is never going to have a much easier game than last week to blood Daniels.

Joe came on and scored from wide right in the previous game so Parky then decides it's best to play him up front. Fry did little wrong the week before and then found himself dropped as the gaffer felt we needed Llera's allegedly, greater physical presence.

Parky must sort all this and dare I say ( again ) his latest acquisitions aren't looking all that. I prefer Solly ( when fit ) to Francis, Racon to McCormack and Benson and Abbott aren't really cutting the mustard............strikers are expected to score goals aren't they ?

Racon and Semedo do look the best central pairing and fair enough, at least that part of the equation seems ok. Martin appears capable of scoring us some goals and add to that his creativity and overall ability it surely warrants a free role behind one or two of our stirkers...probably Abbott as the single stirker if fit.

Parky needs to be more flexible, certainly at home and adopting a different formation should be part of that. 4-5-1 at present would be best when away and I'd suggest 3-5-2 which is very workable at home. No reason why leaving Francis out of a back 3 would do much harm.

That would leave Jackson free to come to replace Reid on the left if he's fading in the second half as he often does. I've still to be convinced by Wagstaff as a consistent performer and for me Joe should start on the right.

My team today in going 3-5-2 would be :-

Daniels, Llera, Doherty, Fry, Reid, Racon, Semedo, Anyinsah, Martin, Benson and Abbott.

Whatever team Phil picks let's hope they finally " gel " as it appears that Labour will have elected a new leader before they do and that's taken over 4 months although it seems longer !

This is another game we should win for many reasons not least because the Daggers played midweek but as ever with Charlton it won't be that simple. Let's hope the lads can get the 3 points and that our strikers finally get scoring.

Come On You Reds !

Saturday 18 September 2010

Tranmere Away

John Barnes as he'd most like to be remembered

John Barnes as he'd least like to be remembered


Last season we recorded an emphatic 4-0 win away to the Tranmere, a number of factors suggest that a repeat today is highly unlikely. Gone is John Barnes whose career as a footballer is in stark contrast to his subsequent attempts at management and er tv presenter............not his finest hour !

In addition, and overlooking the loss of several of our better players from last season, the lads aren't playing well. Not sure how long we have to wait for them to gel but let's hope they do so soon.

Les Parry ( another physio who seems to know a bit about managing a football team if not healthy eating ) has come in and did a splendid job in saving them from relegation last season. I quite like Les, aside from the admiration I have for what he did for Tranmere last term, he sounds a jolly decent chap with a good sense of humour. Not that a sense of humour is a pre-requisite of course. I view Curbs as a legend but I doubt he had 'em wetting themselves every week.

As ever we retain a pretty good defence and let's hope young Daniels ( I say young but every player is young to me in the same way that policemen are too these days ) fits in well. I'd retain Doherty and Fry in the middle as they didn't do too much wrong last week.

In midfield McCormack doesn't deserve to start and Racon does if we want a modicum of creativity. Joe needs to start on the right and Reid on the left. Martin should play behind a lone stirker as I feel that's going to prove his best position and you should make good use of your better players. I'd go for Abbott as the lone man.

I don't think Parky will do much of that as he tends to stick with pretty much the same side week in week out. I'd like to think he's aware of the need to tinker though. I get frustrated by his habit of not playing players when they are full of confidence. It's happened with Solly and Racon already this season of ones that I can think of instantly.

I hopeful but not confident of a win. Let's hope Parky does the right thing, gets the team up for it and we can come away with the 3 points.

I watched the Saints beat Bath last night in a great game at Franklins Gardens. Today, finances prevent me from making the trip to Tranmere but I have free ticket to see MK Dons v Rochdale. It'll be interesting to see our upcoming opponents in both league and paint pot. They seem to be on a roll at the moment.

Let's pray for an Addicks victory to keep us in the shake up at the top of the league.

Come On You Reds !

Monday 13 September 2010

Knott's County


God's chosen county - the only one good enough for the best wicketkeeper / batsman ever.

What a wonderful weekend ! It started on Friday evening with a reunion of the 1970 Kent CCC championship winning side. What a remarkable team not least because as of 1st July 1970 they were bottom of the championship and just over over two months later on September 11th they were champions !

Most of my sporting heroes, let alone the finest cricketers the world has ever seen, were there. Meeting the likes of Denness, Shepherd, Ealham, Graham, Johnson, Chris Cowdrey, Underwood and the great Alan Knott was fantastic.

This was an unforgettable evening with many great stories and reminisces from those players. All had time for everyone. It was all put together wonderfully well with great attention to detail and all credit to Kent for that. It doesn't seem that their success is likely to repeated in the near future but like Charlton we live in hope.

This was followed by a win for the Addicks on Saturday afternoon and I'd have settled for that before kick off. As has been noted by others it wasn't great and the first half was as poor as I've witnessed for many a year. Given my support of Charlton for many, many years that really is saying something !

The introduction of Racon saw an improvement but to be honest it still wasn't great. I was disappinted to see Reid so tucked in during the first forty five and assume that this was under orders. God, or rather Parky, knows why........on so many occasions he clearly should have got wider to receive the ball.

Parky has some thinking to do still. We still have no natural goalscorer and I'm sure many of us could write down our favoured starting eleven and there'd be few matching ones. There seems no decent pairing of any two strikers and one can't help but think that a formation change would help.

Part of the problem at present is that 3 big signings are not that convincing.......McCormack, Benson and Francis aren't pulling up any trees for me and their places are far from secure.

I feel Martin is being wasted. Clearly he is more skillful than just just about anyone else in the side and one of the few likely sparks of creativity. I'd suggest playing him just behind a lone striker in a 4-5-1 as this may see him at his best. 

With two seemingly easier fixtures coming up I hope that Parky can get it right and that the team starts to gel. It needs to happen soon or we'll be losing ground that we're not equipped to recover which is a shame when so many teams are similarly failing to find any consistency.




Tuesday 7 September 2010

Caught Knott Bowled Underwood

The Boys Are Back In Town

If one of your earliest childhood sporting memories is of the above method of dismissal for both Kent and England, then you'll be interested in the reunion of the Kent CCC 1970 championship winning side.

It takes place this Friday at the St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury and whilst tickets are a tad expensive at £50 per head, I think it's an evening not to be missed. This price includes a 3 course meal and a copy of the excellent " Trophies and Tribulations " which offers an insight to events covering 40 years of Kent cricket.

All surviving memebers bar two will be there. That includes an appearance by A.P.E. Knott on a rare trip over from his now home in Cyprus.

For fans of Kent cricket over many generations but particulalry the 1970's this promises to be a truly wonderful evening. This group of players over the following 10 to 11 years formed the basis of teams that went on to be the most successful the county has ever had. Aside from that it wasn't unusual for most England teams to have at least 3 or 4 Kent players in it such was the strength of the team. Indeed that 1970 winning side was without Cowdrey and others, absent on test duty,  for several games.

Tickets are still available from the club and I urge you to get one. Visit the club website for all relevant details.

It promises to be quite a night.

Friday 3 September 2010

East and West

Short-sighted, can't walk unaided, infirm........he should have no trouble beating England tonight !

What a weekend readers ! It all starts tonight when England take on a womble as they seek to win back our affections after a surprisingly poor world cup performance that left the nation stunned. Well Steve G and the lads don't worry about winning back my affections..........I never had any for you anyway although rumours persist that others might have eh !

This is gripping stuff so I'm off to an alcohol fuelled quiz which is to be followed by a curry. I could get the same after-effects watching our brave boys sans the beer and food but this will be far more enjoyable.

Who really cares.........evidently not Terry nor Lampard who as we know feel that their feeble world cup efforts didn't affect the Chelsea side and at the end of the day that's all that really matters eh ? No siree, JT and Lamps are sitting this one out but hope to be fit for CFC's next game.

On Tuesday they take on the chocolate, cheese, clock making and peace loving neutral Swiss. Both these footballing goliaths will probably prove more than a match for the England lads and even if not, why bother. What does anyone think they'd do if they even qualified for the final stages ? Just more embarrassment for the rest of us. 

Aside from the start of the rugby season starting our boys will be in deepest Devon tomorrow taking on those Exeter boys. Yep our lads will up against the pasty-munching, cider-swilling folk from the West Country.

Parky now has some positive selection issues for a change which is refreshing. Hopefully, Dailly will make it to play. I'd like to see Fry given a go. I'd rest Wagstaff as I fear he's not as effective as the Orient game suggested he might be.

Play Martin on the right. Bring back Solly. Get Benson in. Play Racon. Play Semedo. Play Reid. Play Fortune. Play Llera. Play Kevin Pietersen. Play 14 players. Play it again Sam.......

I'm losing the plot and I've not had a beer yet. At least I've avoided any stereotypes which, like cliches, I avoid like the plague.

Come On You Reds !

Monday 30 August 2010

Cheerio ! Cheerio ! Cheerio !

" Doh ! "

Super, super Al, super, super...........oh hang on ! May be not ! Southampton have now decided as we all did some while ago that " you're not super any more ! "

Oh dear ! Never mind I'm sure he'll pop up some soon at a football ground near you. I do so hope that he gets full compensation.......we know that's important to him regardless of how well ( or otherwise ) you've performed.

Super Al allegedly has some strange ways as I understand and perhaps it's those that have contributed to his dismissal. I believe he was lucky to last into this season.

Super Al is unlikely to have a better opportunity than he had at Saints given the whole set up with good players and money at his disposal. He's certainly spent a great deal of it.

I assume that the Saints have someone lined up........Martin O'Neill may well be inerested if he looks at the long term.

I was going to post about Satruday's game but not much to say on that. Obviously the injury to Elliott just help to highlight how thin our squad is. We desperatley need those new recruits !

Perhaps Fry needs to play a bigger part in the team and now !

Friday 27 August 2010

Eh up ! A famous Terrier !

Zoe Lucker - famous fan of the Terriers

As you can tell I've been doing some research on famous Huddersfield Town supporters as evidenced by the photo above. There's nothing gratuitous about that I can assure you. Harold Wilson was a supporter too but do you know, I couldn't get a picture of him !

Despite Town playing in midweek this remains a tough game. Like the majority of fellow bloggers I'd be happy with a draw. Their main goal scoring threat comes in the form of Jordan Rhodes. In addition, the arrival of Alan Lee from Palarse makes it a certainty that he'll score given the law of sod.

Town are a good side and we'll need to be at our best. Certainly a vastly improved performance from last week is needed. The side is fairly perdictable barring injuries. Dailly in for Llera and Semedo in for Racon. I guess Wagstaff has earned another start but I'd like to think that Parky would consider putting Martin out right and getting another forward on if it's not working.

I had hoped we'd have strengthened the squad by now with everything done and dusted. Our squad remains painfully thin leaving little room to change things during a game. We do seem to be making hard work of getting these transfers sorted. I'm sure all are doing their best but as is ever the way with the Addicks it's going down to the wire eh ?

I do hope that Fortune signs up as I believe he'll be more than capable at this level and is a Charlton man after all. I've no idea if the much referenced Benson is any good but trust he's quicker on a football pitch than he is putting pen to paper.

I'm not doing so many away games this season for various reasons mainly but not purely financial. My absence tomorrow is down to cricket which I'd happily pass up if I could as it's meaningless match and it's not going to be 27 degrees in the shade ! Sadly I'm obligated meaning my first absence of the season.

Given the nickname of the Terriers I can't let the opportunity pass without a dog " joke " ( the term joke used very loosely of course ).........
A postman meets a boy and a huge dog.  " Does your dog bite ? " asks the postman. " No " replies the boy. The dog then bites the postman's leg. " You said he didn't bite " shouts the postman. " That's not my dog ! " says the boy.  

Come On You Reds !

Monday 23 August 2010

Lancastrians Spoil My Sporting Weekend

Once more unto the breach......a typical Lancastian as seen at Canterbury last week

I enjoyed a very pleasant few days last week on the Kent coast ( once more unto the beach ) and at Canterbury watching Kent take on Lancashire. Many wonderful childhood memories of holidays and superb cricket especially from the teams of the 70's.

If you're a Kent fan and not aware there is a 40th anniversary dinner for the 1970 championship winning side on Friday 10th September at the St Lawrence ground. Tickets are rather expensive at £50 a shot but all surviving members bar two of them are expected to be there and it should be a great evening. Check the Kent CCC website for details.

My own cricket was called off on Saturday morning which left me free to get to the Valley. I expected a difficult game but fully anticipated a win assuming we matched our previous two performances. The result from Canterbury gave a clue as to how the football might go as the Kent team pretty much surrendered save for efforts from Coles and Tredwell.

Sadly the Addicks didn't play well and Oldham got a deserved draw and could have gone away with more. We never really got going after having dominated the early exchanges but as ever we didn't score that vital second when we were on top albeit briefly.

There was little room for changing the side given our flimsy squad and the two suspensions, speaking of which Semedo was sorely missed.

I felt Wagstaff faded in the second half and that he should have come off with Martin moving out to wide right. Abbott got little to no protection from the referee as he was manhandled all afternoon. The referee was another shocker I felt, at least he didn't send one of ours off I suppose ! Nice to see the other team get someone sent off..............I think their boy will in trouble for firing the ball at our dugout although if Parky was his target then that was a poor effort from close range !

I was disappointed to hear some booing at half time and the final whistle...........don't think that's deserved at all. This current team may not be as good as some recent Charlton teams but I don't feel you can accuse them of lack of effort.

We desperatley need to get another couple of players in and I'm sure Parky and co are working on that. Another striker and a wide man remain the priority for me. Let's hope we can get a couple of quality players in. I suspect we may have to wait until deadline day as is the way with the Addicks.

In the meantime, I note from Wyn Grant's Championship Diary :-

http://addickschampionshipdiary.blogspot.com/2010/08/shrimpers-turn-down-mcleod.html

that Izale McLeod  has just been rejected by Southend. This follows being turned down by Brentford and Rotherham. It seems that Izale is proving about as popular as the toilet paper of similar name, ouch !

Wyn poses the question why we paid so much money for him. It's all down to the previous chief scout ( pictured below ) who has since left the post. I understand that his ability to scout sadly didn't match his skills at the keyboard.


Saturday 14 August 2010

Hats Off !

Well done Parky

What the hell do I know ? Something of a rhetorical question eh ! I'd have started with Solly and Sodje whilst leaving out Francis and Wagstaff. When Dailly was sent off I'd have kept Reid on and taken Wagstaff off. I moaned like hell about these decisions but ate humble pie well before the final whistle went.

For the second game running a player I rate very little turned in a man of the match performance so well done to Wagstaff. Like Solly I hope he can keep this up. I confess to going every so slightly mad when the third went in !

What a game and what spirit from the lads. Now we've got rid of the fancy dans and big time charlies we've a team that seems full of fight and spirit. This is what's needed and let's hope that we can really push on this season and get up. I think we have a real chance.

It might help if we can keep all eleven players on the pitch ! Again I felt a sense of injustice. Dailly's yellow for handball seemed harsh to me and the second too. I don't think the ref thought about a yellow until their player did a Nicky Bailey impression on the floor !

Every player worked their socks off last night and there was great support from us in the stands. All really good. It gave us all a chance to laugh at the ludicrous Man Utd fan in the home area........what a t**t !

Cricket for me today has been rained off and I could do with the same next week because I'm going to miss next week's game if not.

These sending offs will stretch our squad to the limit so let's hope we get through next week with no new injuries or suspensions, get another win and be all set to take on Huddersfield.

We are top of the league ( for now anyway ) !

Thursday 12 August 2010

Leighton's Orient

The great man himself - Frederic Leighton. This is a self-portrait, sadly not even Wikipedia has been able to identify the artist.

 

Leighton's Orient - Frederic was highly influenced by the East End. This is the Arab Hall, designed to display Leighton's priceless collection of over a thousand Islamic tiles, the interior evokes a compelling vision of the Orient.............poor attention to detail though as there's no sign of the Matchroom Stadium.


Amazing and if we're honest, we probably all thought there was no connection between culture and Friday's opponents. As ever, Wikipedia and some dogged research, proves otherwise. Poor old Fred died a day after being made a peer.............became a Lord and then met the Lord........heaven's above !

I think we can all write-off Tuesday's performance as a bad day at the office and focus on the league. To be honest most of us wanted out of that competition anyway, just not in the manner in happened. Thankfully Huddersfield won their game meaning they play midweek before we travel to meet them on the Saturday.

I'm going to the game on Friday as I did last year. It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening then. The result and in coming back from 1-0 behind was great and a few pre-match beers in the Birbeck Tavern ( on Langthorne Road ) helped make the evening. Good pub this with nice ales and a good beer garden.......well worth a visit if you've time.

The O's have a few players with Charlton connections not least Matt Spring. I guess Matt will be out to prove a point and so will be fired for it. Don't think they rested many players for their Carling Cup game in midweek so hopefully our boys will mostly be fresher.

I assume we'll have the same starting eleven as Saturday save for Semedo and Wagstaff. They're likely to be replaced by Racon and Martin respectively. Prior to Semedo's sending Parky may have thought have moving to 4-5-1 but that's all gone west now even if he was. I can't see he's got any real flexibility there.

I expect that this will be a tough game, however, with good away support and hopefully matching performance from the lads I think we're good for at least a point.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 8 August 2010

Solly Good Show !


For he's a Solly good fellow

and so say all of us ! I have to admit that Solly was not one of my favourite players prior to kick off yesterday. Always seemed a bit lightweight and not really done well. Of course and to be fair to him he was always playing out of position. My view has changed after yesterday. He put in a solid performance, managed a couple of great runs going forward and if he can maintain that level will do very well, let's hope he can.

Parky has done well in the players he's brough in and I drove down to the Valley with more optimism and excitement than I'd have anticipated a couple of weeks ago. I do like Parky on the whole and feel he is honest and is trying his best for the club and the fans. His appearance on Tuesday at the clean up demonstrates that and his willingness for an impromptu q & a session too. My only concern with him is tactically every now and then I think he does things that seem to make little sense. That aside I think he's realistically about the best man for the job.

Shades of last season in yesterday's game. Bournemouth are a team we should have put away quite comfortably especially given the gilt-edged chances Reid created. It should have all been over in the first half. Perhaps I'm being a bit too critical but we did do that a lot last season and we can't afford not to put these teams away.

The ridiculous sending off of Semedo didn't help of course. That decision capped a totally inept display from the ref. His East Stand friend, allegedly running the line, didn't help either. Thank goodness the other lino knew what he was doing.

The ref didn't give himself a chance to replay the incident in his mind. The way he went over frantically still blowing his whistle for no reason told you that his mind was already made up and that he was going to show a red card. Wrong decision totally and why didn't he just take those few seconds to think about it. I'm sure we'll appeal but we all know what happens when clubs like our appeal..........sweet FA ! In fact, history shows it usually makes matters worse !

Overall I was pleased with how the lads played given all the new faces. Akpo did ok and won most aerial battles and Abbot worked hard in a deep role. I'm not overly convinced about these two as a strike partnership.........we'll see but I think a different type of striker, a natural goalscorer or someone who's a bit quicker would compliment either.

Wagstaff again proved that he's best as a sub and I don't think Martin will have too much trouble in securing the right wing berth. Martin seems to have some flair about him and that will be good to see in the next few months.

McCormack seemed okay, good passing and got an excellent tackle in during the first 5 minutes to announce his arrival. I'm worried about his temperament though and he's needs to keep a lid on that.

Reid showed how silly Parky was towards the end of last season in playing Bailey ahead of him and out of position. I wonder how much that cost us. The play-off semi-final 1st leg still sticks in my mind as a prime example. All history now of course. Reid was great and it's good to see him being so positive and willing to take on defenders. Mind you I think I'd have liked to have a run against Bradbury !

Not sure about Francis.........he was easily beaten a couple of times, let's hope that's down to a lack of games of late. If Solly keeps playing as he did then he'll have to go some to force his way in to the team.

Next it's on to Shrewsbury in the Carling Cup. Not sure what I want from this game. A win would be good for confidence but it also means another game when we don't have a large squad. In addition, we still have to play in the paint pot trophy with litte option to rest players. Friday's game against the O's is more important so I'll settle for a league win that would put us top for a few hours against a win on Tuesday.

Wednesday 4 August 2010

Old Jokes Re-visited No. 235

" I say, I say, I say ! My wife's just been to Bournemouth "
" In Dorset ? "
" Yes, she highly recommends it ! "

You couldn't wish for more than playing Bournemouth in August or so you'd have thought...........playing them away would have been preferable. Just like our recent away trip to Blackpool, in the February I think it was, the fixture computer has done us no favours ! I'd have liked a weekend down that way in the summer.

I suppose I can't complain too much having just returned from the West Country having experienced the delights of Instow and Appledore. They are beautiful places and well worth a visit if you're down that way.

I'm never keen on playing newly promoted sides early in the season as they're usually well up for it. In addition, they'll be keen to put one over a side still viewed as one of the big boys in Division 3.

This season will be more of a struggle than last, no doubt about that. I not about to rush out and put a few quid on us winning the first 6 games. After all we no longer have McLeod to bang in the goals for us ! We have have hung onto Semedo and Racon to date although I appreciate they may still go but it's more than I expected. At least the prima donnas have gone and we're down to players who really want to be here and perhaps as a result we'll get more honest and commited team.

I guess we all have a rough idea of the side likely to take to the field of play as there really aren't too many options. At the time of writing we have no back up keeper as it appears that Marshall doesn't want to be a deputy, boom boom !

We still need another striker of course. I think we need a right winger too as Wagstaff for me is best as a sub not playing the full 90 minutes.

I'm aiming on going to Shrewsbury and Orient such is my renewed enthusiasm for the season and whilst I'm able to. Overall though I doubt I'll be taking in as many away games as I did last season although there are a couple that I'll definitely be at for various reasons.

I'll be praying that the boys get off to a winning start. I'm pretty sure I'll be nursing a hangover as I'm at the second test at Edgbaston on Friday and a pint or two will no doubt be sunk.


Come On You Reds !

Wednesday 28 July 2010

Westward Ho !

A truly wonderful pint of beer especially when served in North Devon !

A very busy end to the school year meant me posting very little recently ( I can sense the collective sigh of relief ! ) save for a couple re the shambles that is the England football team. I was not greatly surprised as you may know by England's pathetic world cup showing nor at the various rumours following it. What a mess and the great disciplinarian that we are led to believe Capello is has spectactularly failed to address any issues before, during or after. In addition, the news that Paul Scholes was approached to play by a second in command no less just 2 days before the tournament started speaks volumes !

Never mind, time to focus on what really matters, and as you know nothing else does ! I managed to take in the friendly at Bedford the other night. Sadly, I failed to rendevous with Ketts as I got lured to the bar by the offer of a hen of the Speckled and alcoholic variety.

A couple of good and promising performances I thought and others not so. I really hope that Fortune is made an offer......he's more than good enough and is a true Charlton man after all.

Our need for strikers is blindingly obvious and please God don't let it be David Mooney ! I'm not sure who is available and that could be good enough but there must be someone out there. Words cannot express how delighted I was to see the departure of McLeod........what a mistake and a very costly one too !

My cricketing duties usually mean me missing the first couple of games but fortunately I have a free Saturday on 7th August so will be there to witness our start to the 2010-11 season.

Before that though I'm off on Friday for a cricket tour of North Devon. It's a truly wonderful part of the world where the people are so laid back and friendly. Superb scenery and pubs to match, I can't recommend it too highly. As you'd expect beer plays a large part in proceedings especially the aforementioned Doom Bar from nearby Cornwall.

Whilst the lads are toiling away at Vicarage Road on Saturday I'll be doing my best to lay bat on ball before retiring to the wonderful Bell Inn in Chittlehampton for a pint or several of quality ale. A week later and in less serene surroundings and I'll be fretting over another season of The Addicks.

Come On You Reds !