Tuesday 27 April 2010

Jonjo A Go Go

Sometimes you just know when you've outgrown a relationship

It seems as though Jonjo is on his way to Liverpool. Good luck to him. It may not be a bad move. He resisted the temptation to move to Chelsea in the summer probably having seen what little good did it Mr Parker.

Liverpool are a much better bet. He may well go out on loan somewhere or if he stays he will probably get a go in the league cup and f.a. cup teams. With any luck the hapless Benetiz will be gone soon and he'll get an opportunity to work under a quality manager who can offer some decent guidance.

Shelvey signed a new contract not long ago and hepled ensure the the Addicks would be reasonably well rewarded when he finally moved on as was inevitable. 

As for the accompanying news that there will be a sharing of up and coming youth players, well we've seen it all before of course. Remember the flow of players between Inter and ourselves ? No ? Neither do I as it never really happened did it ?

Good luck to Shelvey, he's not had a great season with us for various reasons not least because we seemed unable to find a way to accommodate him after the initial few games. However, he is a player of some promise as we all know. I'm sure we'll all be watching to see how his career progresses.

Sunday 18 April 2010

I Don't Agree With Nick !

No, not you Nick, EVERYONE agrees with you it seems !

A really good performance from the Addicks went unrewarded yesterday. For me, this was the best the team has played for some time. Almost to a man they had good games. Our inability to put the ball in the net allied to and for the second week running a keeper in great form !

My only issue is Nicky Bailey. Talk about square pegs and round holes ! I know left side midfield isn't his position, so does he and it shows. He is tucked inside too much offering no width and has no left foot. I don't think he had a great game yesterday despite his efforts on goal. The free kick wasn't hit with enough pace to truly test the keeper in my view.

We had a natural left winger in Reid on the bench........why not start with him ? He's clearly better than Bailey in that position. Again we were unable to get many crosses from the left and also really attack down that side.

I don't care if Bailey is skipper, if he isn't one of your best eleven players in the system then he don't start ! The Aussies in cricket pick their team and then their skipper. We should do the same.

In addition, I don't think he showed much leadership yesterday. Too busy arguing with team-mates and the referee. Blimey, he was nearly as bad as Chris Martin and that's saying something !

Semedo should not have gone off yesterday. What a game he was having, pulling all the strings in midfield. Racon too was playing very well.

I was pleased to see Randolph continue in goal, he deserves too. Clearly he's gaining in confidence given his fancy footwork when being closed down.........better than some of our outfield players some might argue !

The last three performances should give cause for optimism. If we carry on like that we should give ourselves a good chance of going up whether automatic or not. The spirit seems good. Let's hope it continues as we head to the West Country next Saturday !

Wednesday 14 April 2010

Young Kevin Loses Out With Old Bailey

" Young Kevin " saw red last night

What would Curbs say ? It never happened under his tutelage ! " Young Kevin sent off ? Surely Not ? " I'm afraid so Curbs. Who'd have thought ? And The Peter Pan of CAFC is now 32 and ought to know better ! Especially tangling with old Bailey ( age somewhat younger ), tsk ! tsk !

That someone was sent off is no surprise, that it was SKL, well that is a surprise ! What a horrible football team Colchester are in every sense. I'm hoping that my neck brace will be able to come off in the next couple of days ! If we end up in the play offs let's pray to God that we don't get them..............another 180 minutes and maybe more of that.......arghhhhhh !!!!!

Never mind, we triumphed and that's all that matters. Akpo started......hooray ! He won a few aerial battles but sadly his finishing left a lot to be desired. Still it was better than watch Forster struggle on his own up front. At last Parky saw the light !

Now then what of midfield ? Well, I don't think Bailey had a good game and clearly left hand side of midfield isn't his bag and we all know that. The numbers of times he got the ball and it was crying out for a left footed cross and clearly he can't deliver that. We lose something as an attacking threat.

More important games are coming up and Parky needs to make a decision. Either he changes the formation or he leaves one of Bailey, Racon or Semedo out of the side. Our two wingers must start every time. Perhpas if Borrowdale isn't replced then he might think about 3-5-2 ? I can but hope !

As Ketts has pointed out the only downside last night was the big election or rather lack of it ! Where were all those " volunteers " ? I've not voted and trust they'll be there on Saturday I don't want to be dis-enfranchised !

Now we can look forward to Saturday with more hope than we might have done a couple of weeks ago. A spirited performance from the lads last night and Norwich suffering last minute nerves it seems all add to the mix.

Tuesday 13 April 2010

I'm not voting for Dave or Nick, for me it's the Scottish Fella

Sorry Dave I can't vote for you

 Sorry Nick not you either

Yes, there is still one Scotsman who can be reasonably confident of winning an election

Tonight we get the chance to vote in the only poll that really matters, CAFC player of the season. I'm going for Christian as he's been, for me, our most consistent performer.......in a positive way ! He quietly goes about his job and marshalls the defence using all his knowledge and experience.

Another tough game tonight and none of us cares how we win if we do, just go and win. Tonight we get another reminder of why we were rather shortsighted to let Lisbie go. Having failed to set the Prem alight for us he surely deserved a chance in the Championship with us and it seemed clear to me that he'd probably be ok at the very least. As we know he usually comes back to bite us on the bum every time we play against him !

I've note been impressed by Parky's decision to play Forster as the lone striker for the last few games. It's a role Deon Burton can play because he's a bit bigger and can control and lay off almost anything that's thrown at him. It's not for Forster though and I think he'll be better with  strike partner.

For goodness sake against these tall long ball merchants can we start with Akpo. I seriously doubt we will but given Parky's ever changing approach to his starting eleven nothing can be ruled out.

A win tonight would keep alive the glimmer of hope of 2nd spot, let's hope the lads can deliver and set up a mouthwatering encounter for Saturday.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 11 April 2010

Titanic Struggle At Southampton As Antonio's Goal Winslett For The Saints

The Result Didn't Go Down Well With The Addicks

An improved performance from the Addicks saw them unlucky not to come away with something from yesterday's game. Kelvin Davis needed to be on top form to keep a clean sheet.

Bailey tested the keeper to the full. He had a good game and has clearly benefited from his enforeced rest. Having said that I still have an issue with us seemingly only playing 4-5-1 to accommodate him. Clearly even Parky though it would be harsh to leave out Racon or Semedo. I don't understand the thinking behind playing a striker as short as Forster ina 4-5-1. We needed to be bold and set ourselve up with the best chance. That needed two strikers not one be it in that formation or 3-5-2.

I enjoyed my weekend in Southampton and I was impressed with St Mary's a decent, clean, modern and spacious stadium. The weather helped too !

We've got to go and do the business on Tuesday as we seek to plug away and hope to finish as high as we can even if it's not in second place.

Friday 9 April 2010

A Need For Respect

Tomorrow may see a minute's silence in remembrance of the two firemen who tragically lost their lives in Southampton earlier this week. If so, I hope that this is impeccably observed as sadly this wasn't the case for the Bristol Rovers away game. We have a few younger supporters who shamed our club that day.

Someone who'll be getting little to no respect from any of our fans is Pardew. Our former manager became an increasing disaster on almost every level and was well rewarded for his " efforts ".

The JP Trophy win has bought him a stay of execution I think as I believe he's on borrowed time at Southampton. It's not too hard to envisage him not being there in a year's time.

Continuing the respect theme a little does need to be shown to the Saints. They're a good team who'll offer our biggest test since the defeat to the Spanners. However, let's not overdo it and we need to feel free to play our own game and hopefully, an attacking one at that.

I feel that the team that started on Monday, save for Akpo in for Shelvey, should take to the field tomorrow. Forster should play well with Akpo who ought to be able to supply him with chances. The midfield four deserve to keep their places. I thought Sam had a good game on Monday and worked quite hard. I know some may disagree and I've just been prescribed glasses by the way but I really do think he did well !

 I'm really looking forward to this weekend as I'm staying down in Southampton on Saturday night. In addition, I've not been to St Mary's before and it looks like one of the better stadiums.

For a number of reasons we need to win tomorrow. Let's hope the boys give it everything !

Come On You Reds !

Tuesday 6 April 2010

Psychic Success !

Another Derek Ensures Valley Victory !

It emerged today from sources close to Phil Parkinson that he consulted with T.V. psychic Derek Acorah ahead on Easter Monday's game. Looking for any kind of supernatural inspiriation, Parky thought Derek may be able to help. Apparently he did !

Derek pointed out the significance of the date.

" Look at it " said Derek " it's 05/04/10 and what do you think that means ? "

" Not sure " replied Parky hesitantly.

" Take away the noughts and what does it leave you with ? " asked the average medium going on to to hint that " it has something to do with the formation ! ".

" Ah ! " said an enlightened Parky, " I must continue with with 4-4-2 ! "

" No ! " responded an agitated Acorah. " It all points towards 4-5-1 ! "

" I get it now " said Parky who then went on, sadly without any other help it seems, to pick a team to play 4-5-1. We'll I say with no furter help although our Derek may well have been the one suggesting a we play Forster as a lone ( loan ? ) striker !

Nothing supernatural about that selection. I recall going away to Ipswich and seeing us play 4-5-1 with Leroy Lita on his own up front, it wasn't a great success then either. Given our propensity to bang long, high balls up the pitch this was not a good idea.

To me it made more sense to start with Akpo and Shelvey if you're going 4-5-1. Failing that play 4-4-2 with Akpo and Forster. Forster seems to have something about him and would work well with Forster in my view.

What a difference when Akpo came on on Monday ( Saturday too mind ). We created a hatful of chances and as we know should have buried Carlisle.

Shelvey got a lot of stick for his misses but he never shyed away and still had the courage to put himself in there, good to see in one so young.

Sodje S had a cracking game and even Mooney made a couple of telling passes during his brief appearance.

Racon and Semedo were again good in midfield. Hate to say it but I wouldn't start with Bailey even if fit next time out. Not going into vital games with both wingers and those two ( R & S when playing well ) is a negative approach.

The result as ever is everything though and my little irritations with team selection won't amount to a heap of beans if we go up !

We'll have to play damn well to beat Southampton and being the pessimist I am I really can't see us getting anything. As ever though I live in hope...........typical pessimist eh ?

Sunday 4 April 2010

Eggcuses, Eggcuses !

Old jokes revisited........why do the French only eat one egg for breakfast ? Because un oeuf is un oeuf !

With wonderful timing at Easter, the Dons assistant manager, Karl Robinson came out with a lot of eggcuses for the the Dons failure to win. A virus in the camp, some players not sleeping overnight, one player straining a hamstring driving in ! Never mind a pretty insipid peformance by his team, our Karl thinks the Dons deserved to win !

Perhaps this is to be expected as his boss Mr Ince still believes the ref cost the game when they lost 5-1 at the Valley !

I'd happily agree that we didn't necessarily deserve the win in a fairly poor game and a draw might have been a fair result. We didn't play well and only really looked threatening when Sam, Shelvey and Akpo came on. However, we suffered enough in some games when things have gone against us so we'll take this win thanks.

I felt that Racon and Semedo played well in midfield. I'd stick with them but feel that Parky will be so keen to play Bailey if fit then one of them or more likely Reid will miss out.

It looksd to me as if Akpo and Forster will provide our best attacking options if McKenzie is not yet at full fitness.

Praise be to Randolph ! He made three eggscellent ( sorry ! ) saves yesterday. I'm really pleased for him and it was great to hear his name sung by our fans. I don't think he's ever wanted to leave the club and has quietly got on with whatever has been asked of him. Well done Darren !

The win leaves us in fifth place, however, the gap has closed up nicely and we're still in there with a remote chance of an automatic promotion slot. I think it may be beyond us, however, if the team can take some confidence from yesterday then we may see an upturn in performances.

For tomorrow I'd like to see Sam in for Wagstaff who in my opinion should only come on for the last 20 minutes of a game. Akpo should come in for Mooney who was again too ineffectual and played too deep.

I thought Shelvey was good yesterday and played with some composure and intelligence. I just don't know how he fits in to our side and it can only be if we play 4-5-1 or my preferred but unlikey 3-5-2.

The result was everything yesterday as it will be in all our remaining games.

Tomorrow is another must win game and we all know that the lads won't let us down and will deliver eggsactly what we want....won't they ?

Come On You Reds !

Friday 2 April 2010

Live Round The Corner, I Only Live Round The Corner !

Newport Pagnell - more than just a motorway service station

Yes, tomorrow I can sing that little ditty to myself ! The shortest trip of the season for me in a game we need to win for many reasons. Personally we need to avoid defeat as the kids in my school will give me stick ( I don't want to be bullied ! ). Mind you given the Easter holidays at least that's two weeks away and they may have forgotten by then !

It's unclear whether Bailey or Burton will be fit and I don't expect we'll know that until we see the players warming up prior to the game. As I've said before I'd leave Bailey out of the starting eleven tomorrow as Racon and Semedo seemed to have a good game last week and Bailey's not been great of late. Just because you're skipper doesn't mean that you should automatically play although, as captain, that's not something I'll be applying to my cricket team this season of course !

Don't expect too much by way of an atmosphere tomorrow. As is the way with a number of clubs the Dons feel it necessary to play music when they score. I've never liked that, the cheering of the crowd is what you want to hear, it's not ice hockey. I'm glad we quickly gave up on that when we did it a few years ago.

Hopefully a good away following can get behind the team and the players will respond with a decent performance. This is a game we really should win. I think we need to take the lead and then seek to press home the advantage. If they go one up then I can only see us getting a draw at best.

I'll need to be very observant tomorrow as Ketts has kindly invited me to judge the man of the match. Unless I have a  " road to Damascus moment " on the way to the ground it's unlikely to be Mooney however much runnning he does ( allegedly ) !

Come On You Reds !