Friday 28 October 2011

An Evening with Deano - Friday 2nd December

Trawling through various e-mails and t'internet news I came across a couple of items. Aside from " Footballer charged by police " a story concerning Titus Bramble who no doubt is being charged under the trades descriptions act ( footballer ? ) although the charges are more serious than that, I discovered news of an evening with Dean Kiely at the St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury.

As it says via the link below, Kent and Charlton have strong links not only for those that played for both but many have trained with the other team, Knott and Elliott for example albeit over different decades !

Promises to be a good evening for those that can attend. Details below :-

Long Trip Oop North

Pilots returning their planes to the monkey hangar.........

I'll admit that our nickname is a little contrived as I don't think discovering a haddock dressed up as a footballer in S.E. 7 is all that plausible but a monkey dressed as a Frenchman ? No wonder The Archbishop of Canterbury won't ever go to Hartlepool, well if you're the primate of all England..........

Another away trip and one of the longest, let's hope it's worth it. Hartlepool had a good start at home early doors but since September they've lost 3 at home including a midweek defeat. It should be a good time to play them but...............this is Charlton !

I understand that Hughes played ok on Tuesday albeit being more effective in his defensive duties and I would now expect Stephens to return. It is to be hoped that he returns refreshed and puts on a performance more in keeping with that of early season.

I'd not expect any others changes baring injuries and we can hope that Yann's blossoming partnership with BWP yields yet more goals. Hopefully can score early again and in addition, give ourselves a cushion of more than 2 goals but I'll settle for a win by whatever margin.

Our defence is the meanest in the league along with Tranmere in only conceding 12 goals. Long may that continue and hopefully we'll keep a clean sheet tomorrow.

All the best to all those making the long trip north. I'll be at Franklin's Gradens watching the Saints v Newcastle whilst having half an eye on matters further up the country.

Come On You Reds !

Wednesday 26 October 2011

3 Chairs for the Addicks ! Hip Hip !

Hooray !

The Addicks got back to winning ways on the road again last night. Judging from the reports of ANEM staff and the radio commentary the first half was a comfortable affair for the Addicks who dominated and thoroughly deserved their 2 goal advantage at the break.

The second half wasn't quite so straightforward and our boys in red endured a couple of nervy moments after the Chairboys had scored. I had a nagging feeling that new loanee Bignall would score but it didn't come to pass.

I also had a negative feeling about D'urso when I learned that he was the ref. I understand he was greeted by Addicks fans in a fitting manner with the them warming up for panto season. Like a Shakespearean actor doing said panto I'm sure D'urso thinks he's too good for League One........" it's beneath you ! " he and it isn't. I wouldn't want him reffing a kids game to be honest.  

Where would we be without BWP ! Every successful team needs someone who's going to bag you 20 goals or so in a season. He has been outstanding and as has been acknowledged here and elsewhere, his workrate this season has been a plus too. He is developing a really good partnership with Yann who was unlucky himself not to score last night with the spectacular overhead but Bradley tidied up. The second goal was a lovely calm and clinical finish from a man in form.

I was surprised to learn that BWP has never scored a senior hat-trick but that must surely come soon eh ?

A third goal would have been nice and meant that everyone could relax but Saturday aside that's not our way is it. If we can go to Hartlepool and secure another 3 points on Saturday then that sets up nicely for a Preston side who have lost some form of late.

Am I hoping for too much that we continue in this vein for the next 3 games until we meet Huddersfield ? Someone's got to end their unbeaten run..........could that be at The Valley on November 26th ?

Tuesday 25 October 2011

Encore Les Bleus

Friends reunited - Grant Basey aka The Count now plays for Wycombe

Tonight we play the Chairboys although like Carlisle they are often referred to as the Blues. Another local away fixture for me but finances and decorating / work ( despite it being half term ) dictate otherwise. Fear not as there will be ANEM staff on hand ! Senior reported Clive and young cub Dan will be in attendance to report on the game.

Adams Park, surprisingly not named after ex-manager Tony but rather former captain and benefactor Frank, is somewhat out of the way. Only one pub close to the ground as I recall and parking isn't easy. However, you can park at one of the industrial car parks or the ground itself for about a fiver so not too bad. In addition, on my last visit I had a beer in their clubhouse which was rather pleasant.

Gary Waddock is the man charged with keeping Wanderers in the division. He got them promotion last season and this season the team has had a couple of notable scalps, namely Sheff Utd at home and more recently Hartlepool away. As with all games in this league it will be a tough one.

I'm hoping that Sir Chris retains the same side as the one that started on Saturday. I've commented before that I didn't think Stephens has been at his best of late and Hughes did nothing wrong for me and deserves to retain his place.

We will have optoins on the bench if needed and I'd expect Stephens to replace Euell on there as that seems logical.

I'm pleased that there's been no mention of Sir Chris being linked with the Leicester job now Sven has gone. That man must have been paid more in compensation that actual salary ! What a life ! I'm sure that the Foxes will be looking an established and experienced manager.

As ever Curbs name gets a mention but I fear the longer he goes without a job the harder it'll be for him. I think he set his sights to high and should have taken a Championship or League One job instead of holding out for a Prem one as seems to be the case. If I were making the appointment I'd go for Billy Davies ( how different things might have been if we got him instead of Dowie all those years ago ! ) making Billy a very rare breed if not unique in managing Derby, Forest and Leicester !

If you're going enjoy and give the lads a cheer for me. I shall nervously be listening or checking internet, paint brush in hand.

Come On You Reds ! 

Sunday 23 October 2011

I guess that's why they call them the blues

Carlisle fans certainly had the blues yesterday

I had much sympathy for those hardy Carlisle fans that made the long journey to the Valley yesterday. Their team produced such an insipid performance even allowing for the loss of one player. It'd be nice if their club offered to refund them some money but perhaps given the general state of finances of football outside the Premier league that is unlikely to happen.

The display from the Blues makes it a little difficult to assess our own. However, we started with positive intent and maintained that pretty much throughout although invenitably we tapered off somewhat after the fourth goal was scored. I guess the players aren't to be blamed for that especially as a midweek game looms large on the horizon.

Hughes was a more than adequate replacement for new dad Stephens. When he returns I hope that he will rediscover his early season form. Hughes was quielty effective and conducted his defensive and attacking duties in equal measure.

Green retained his place and produced a more competent performance living up to his initial promise. Yann too of course was kept in the starting eleven. Aside from the goals his link up play was far better than we'd seen to date and it was clear that a lot of hard work was done on the training ground during the week.

I, amongst probably all others, save for Cort was pleased to see the hardworking Solly return to the back four. Another polished show from young Solly.

Hamer did well in saving the penalty although I was concerned to see him flapping again at a couple of corners / crosses. In addition, he had a couple of dodgy moments in the first half that I hope was entirely down to the sun blurring his vision. I got a cap at my cricket club's end of season do last night perhaps I ought to post to Ben !

The opening goal was a good header from Yann although unchallenged he buried it with power and accuracy. BWP's finish for the second was as exquisite as it was precise. The third could have been scored by anyone of half a dozen players and the fourth was a poor effort from the keeper but no less than Hollands deserved.

An accomplished performance by the whole team. Hopefully we are starting out on another long unbeaten run. We all ( well me anyway ) got a bit carried away following the win at Bramall Lane and a good win over a poor Carlisle team isn't reason to repeat that. However, if we can maintain that level and keep passing it well then we may again enjoy success even against those teams who opt to be in your face and frustrate.

Huddersfield's unbeaten run continues and Jordan Rhodes bagged another hat-trick. Despite what heir chairman says we can but hope that a club buys him in the next transfer window. Sheffield Wednesday's good run continues too so it's important that we do the same.

The upcoming games away to Wycombe and Hartlepool are tough but winnable, even more so if we can carry on where we left off yesterday. It was a rare occasion that one could relax from half time knowing that even the Addicks couldn't throw it away !

Friday 21 October 2011

Summit's Up ?

Will the Addicks surrender top spot tomorrow ?

Come 4.55pm tomorrow and Charlton may have lost top spot and even Notts County could be above us.....a sobering thought !

Having garnered a decent amount of points prior to the previous 2 games having taken one only 1 since wouldn't normally be cause for concern. However, as has been pointed out elsewhere it is the manner of the results that causes a worry.

I will plead guilty to allowing myself to be slightly carried away by the victory at Bramall Lane. I felt that was a great win and one that I hadn't anticipated us getting. That however is to overlook my own fears expressed in previous posts that we would pay soon for some of our shortcomings. Whilst there's little doubt that beating Sheff Utd was a jolly good show previous victories or indeed draws were far from convincing.

Sir Chris has indeed tinkered with the side largely as I would have liked to be honest but it's not really worked out. Overlooking the puzzling omission of Solly last week, I'd have gone for Yann and Green being in the starting eleven. Green hasn't played anywhere near the level, I and indeed I suspect, a large number of Addicks fans would have hoped. In addition, whilst Yann wins numerous headers, he doesn't seem to link up as well with BWP as Hayes whose all round game seems slightly better albeit that he may not score as many.

The solution to the latter dilemma would seem to be to start with Hayes and bring on Yann later as his ability as an impact sub is proven. Not sure I can quite bring myself to suggest that the same approach is taken with Wagstaff over Green, however, if Danny doesn't shape up then Wagstaff will merit a start over him even if only for his potential to score.

I've felt for a while that Stephens is fortunate to keep his place as his performances haven't been anywhere near those of August and early September. Allied to that I firmly believe that skip is better in central midfield. Will the boss make that change I wonder ?

As I reflected last time out, there's nothing inherently wrong with our defence which as I said made last week's dropping of Solly a somewhat odd decision. Surely being top of the league and with a 100% record on the road we should be making the oppo worry about us rather than vice versa especially when that oppo is Stevenage.

Carlisle stump up at the Valley on a good run of form. Patience is the order of the day and us as fans need to
" get behind the boys ! " and offer every support.........I'll even give Wagstafff a cheer if it helps !

Gregory Abbott may well shake us down from top place.......let's hope not. Hopefully the management team will have been working hard to get us back to where we were at the start of the season. Thankfully Sir Chris hasn't been daft enough to suggest that " there'll be a backlash " or " big reaction to last week's defeat "   ........when managers made these comments there usually isn't and it only serves to galvanise the other team !

Let's hope for a return to some decent football and winning ways.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 16 October 2011

Nil Points

You get nothing for a pair - not in this game

We might reflect that the run had to end although no one's told Huddersfield that. I had a splendid day at Franklin's Garden watching the Saints overcome Sarries in the LV Cup. It was then ruined by news of the defeat in Herts.

Having read the blogs of those who were there that we didn't play well again is disturbing. Sadly Green has disappointed again and that's a shame as he looked to be full of promise earlier in the season. It seems that Yann and BWP may not be clicking. I was shocked to see Solly dropped to the bench in what I assume was a tactical move to nullify their big men. Every opponent is a big man to Solly and he's coped well so don't get that logic if this is the case.

Our midfield has been a worry for me for a while and clearly it is in midfield and attack that need addressing. The defence is playing ok and isn't leaking goals and the last two have come via deflections.

I trust that Sir Chris and his team will be working hard with the players to address this during the week.

I was also saddened to read of the fighting in our stand before kick off and subsequent abuse to stewards. Our club doesn't need this. I hope that the culprits will be caught and dealt with appropriately.....that's not our club and we don't have a good reputation by chance although it can easily be destroyed by a mindless few.

From next Saturday we have 3 games in just over a week. I'd suggest we need at least 6 points from those in order to stay up there. The visit of Preston follows that and if none of the upcoming fixtures is easy that one certainly won't be.

Friday 14 October 2011


Stevenage is sponsored by Sure deodorant

Not sure how the " new town " of Stevenage can be twinned with 4 other places as it suggests above. It's funny how it's still called new much in the same way the " new " lighthouse at Dungeness is referred to in that way although it was built in the early 60's.....I think I'll call myself new then !

Sadly tomorrow's fixture, the second closest to my home isn't one I'll be attending. Tickets were hard to come by but it was finances more than that which dictated otherwise. Fortunately my weekend isn't entirely devoid of live sporting action as a mate has offered me a ticket for Northampton Saints who play Saracens in the LV Cup. Should be a good game and the Saints have an incredibly strong bench containing a large returning England contingent.

Saturday's encounter with the imaginatively nicknamed The Boro promises to be x-rated. Make no mistake the oppo are a very physical side who will have intention to play a passing game and will lump it up front at every opportunity. One can only hope that we come away with no injuries, serious ot otherwise and no red cards........we've not had one of those this season have we ?

Cort should make a welcome return to the bench following his games with the Guyanese having played in more glamorous and sunnier climes than Stevenage. He may be needed to add some beef to the defence at some stage.

Not sure whether Sir Chris will make any changes from last Saturday. He suprised most of us by playing Yann and Green last week and tomorrow's side is a difficult one to call.

There was an unpleasant end to Boro's game away to Huddersfield last week and it is to be hoped that we don't see a repeat of that and with Sir Chris that seems highly unlikely.

I'll be keeping a close eye on the game from Franklin's Gardens as much in the hope of not reading that we've lost someone to injury..........fingers crossed. Let's hope our fine form on the road continues.

Come On You Reds !

Sunday 9 October 2011

Not great but like a freshly laid egg we remain unbeaten.....

" Now come on then Owain, these nice people haven't come here to watch you waste time, they want to see a good game of football. Please hurry up and take the goal kick, there's a good chap "....repeat ad infinitum...

Darren Drysdale, Darren bloody Drysdale...........if I never see him again it'll be too soon. When the Addicks aren't playing well against a team with cynical tactics the last thing we need is an incompetent ref but that is of course what we got.

Weak and ineffectual, I'm afraid he really wound me up. A lot of the time he had his back to the action and consequently missed a lot of what was happening. Bizarrely he happened to see things than no one else did ! Clearly the man is incapable of running backwards in spite of perfomring most other things in that fashion..

He even left the pitch without the ball and I guess it's still lying there on the half way line just in front of the East Stand.....I wish the same could be said of Mr D.

Enough of him.........Tranmere were clearly there to spoil and timewaste which Wyn Grant had highlighted in his blog pre-match and I hadn't recalled from previous games but Wyn was spot on. With all the timewasting and cynical fouls it shouldn't have been left until the 72nd minutes for a yellow card to be produced. I'm not sure why Solly got booked and Drydale's bizarre arm gestures a la John McCrirrick gave no clue either !

Sir Chris made the two changes I'd have made save for perhaps resting Stephens and moving Jackson into the middle with either Evina or Wiggins or Hughes covering left back / midfield in some combination.

Green was to have disappointing game although he rarely got the ball in the first half and was to some extent nullified and restircted as Rovers 5 man midfiled limited time and space. They wont be the only team to employ that formation and we must find a way to counteract it. With only one man up front then 4 defenders aren't needed and giving one the freedom to get forward more or simply matching up to the oppo will suffice.

Yann had a curate's egg of a game. He won an awful lot of headers but for the most part they weren't finding BWP who'd either made a run in a different direction or failed to read his strike partner. He did though link up well on some occasions and put Bradley through. I think whilst Yann will win most aerial battles he doesn't hold the ball up as well as Hayes.   

Tranmere always carried a threat in the first period and it was no great surprise when they scored. It looked like a deflected shot.......I've yet to see it but can't believe that Hamer wouldn't have saved otherwise.

That left us searching for parity at half-time but sadly the only parity to be found at the interval was Tranmere's boss's cup of cha.

The Addicks started brighter in the second half and could perhaps should have gone on to win it with BWP missing a glorious opportunity late on. I'm not sure about our penalty award but it seems that we should have had one earlier when the aforementioned Mr D ( Grrrr ! ) ruled it outside the area. Jackson dispatched the penalty with aplomb following lengthy delaying tactics from the oppo ( lengthy delaying tactics from Tranmere ? Surely not ? ).

The remainder of the game saw the Addicks press hard for a winner and Yann fizzed one just past the right hand corner from a free-kick that was some way better than his Wednesday night effort. Fortuntely a late mix-up between Morrison and Hamer went unpunished.

I felt that fresh legs were required for the last 15 to 10 minutes but again Sir Chris showed a reluctance to make subs. We need to take a gamble sometimes although not in the way Dowie did away to Newcastle in 2006, the famous incident was referred to in yesterday's programme on page 25. What a plonker !

We are struggling to play well at home but are better away. The inference is that the fans' expectations are high and they get on the players backs and put them under pressure. I sense a few folk get irritated if we don't score after 10 minutes and put teams away easily ( I'm guilty of that on occassion but do keep that to myself and not vocalise it if so ) but overall the vast majority are supportive. The response to going behind was good yesterday. 

In addition, I think most of us will accept that a number of teams will use similar tactics to Tranmere to frustrate and to get what they can. As I said we need to learn to deal with it.

A tough away game awaits next Saturday as we face something of an ale-house side in Stevenage....that won't be pretty. Let's hope that the lads have a good week and can stand up to all that next weekend.

Thursday 6 October 2011

Parry At The Valley

Ian Goodison - cool dude and a rather good defender

Sir Chris will be keen to gloss over Wednesday night's performance and want to resume normal service on Saturday. It wasn't pleasant viewing and only served to highlight the problems arising from a lack of reserve games. Alonso finally came out of hiding but I bet he wished he hadn't. I can't believe he's that bad a player, particularly at this level. I can only assume it's down to a lack of regular games and returning from injury. I'm afraid Doherty hasn't been looking anywhere near good enough for sometime and I'm not sure we'll see him again in an Addicks shirt. Not a good night at the office.

Moving on.......we entertain a Tranmere side that has garnered only 4 points from 24 in the last 6 league games. However, manager, Dr Les Parry states that Rovers have been playing better than those results would suggest. The boss says that they will be coming to play football and looking for a win which is good to hear.

As you'll no doubt be aware their paint pot trophy game against Accrington was abandoned following serious injury to Tom Bender who thankfully now seems on the mend.

Tranmere had a good start to the current campaign but as highlighted above their form has fallen away of late. In attempt to inprove fortunes they've brought a player in on loan from Everton and sadly for me given my love of irony, it isn't the aforementioned Goodison. It is striker Jose Baxter, who, despite his lack of goals is a quality player.

Another striker to look out for, well he'd be hard to miss, is 6ft 5 inch Enoch Showumni. The former Sheffield Wednesday frontman offers quite an imposing physical threat. Let's hope that Taylor and fellow former Wednesday player Morrison can snuff out his menace.

In goal is the delightfully named Owain Fon Williams, apparently he's, really he is !

Enough of the lesser players, I'm looking forward to seeing veteran defender ( he's nearly 39 ) Ian Goodison. I've always been impressed with him and his calm, efficient manner on the pitch. He doesn't seem to break sweat cool dude !

The boss Les Parry is another favourite of mine. Very good sense of humour with a philosophical approach to life in the third tier that's probably borne out of the surprise of taking over as manager from John Barnes and having been the club's physio. He's done a much better job than the ex-Charlton man and that says as much about Barnes ability to manage as it does Parry's.

I'm not sure we'll see many Tranmere fans at the Valley on Saturday as they've cancelled their supporters club coach. Therefore, we can expect something of a total contrast to the crowd and atmosphere we experienced at the last home league game.

Enough of the oppo..........what about the Addicks. I think we can safely assume that BWP will return if fit having missed Wednesday debacle. Hollands and Wiggins too should return along with Hamer. Who will partner BWP up front remains a mystery, perhaps Yann will be given his chance if not the freekick-taking duties ! He won't be adding that one to his Youtube collection.

Perhaps Sir Chris's most difficult decision will be over Wagstaff or Green. I'd go for Green but Sir Chirs seems to favour Wagstaff and as we know is reluctant to change the league eleven.

Whatever the make-up of the team, here's hoping for a good game and 3 points to the Addicks.

Come On You Reds !

Monday 3 October 2011


Jimmy-Floyd Piggybank - The start of the decline

Just sorting through some old programmes......when I say some I mean over 10 seasons worth I think.........I've not finished yet. I'm intending to sell them soon and will offer them up on here as I'd like them to go to a genuine Addicks fan and there's more chance of that given that you'll have had to have read through my drivel first.

I've got just about every home league programme for most seasons plus a few varied away ones. Until last season I'd never fail to buy one.

The 2006-07 programmes caught my eye, not least because of the lazy, money grabbing lump on the front as seen above ( thank me when I tell you that I spared you an awful sight..............Dowie's on the reverse !! ). No, more due to the odd size and shape of the programme. It is square and as I recall it was a bugger to fit into your pocket as basically it wouldn't. It was no surprise then despite lasting longer than Dowie it too didn't survive past that season. Perhaps there was some correlation between the programme and our fate that season.....who knows. Perhaps it just reflected the manager.....ugly, impractical and not popular with the fans.

Inside I managed to read just a few of Dowie's words prior to the onset of nausea........." I do think that our new signings, which include Amady Faye, JFH, Andy Reid, Simon Walton, Scott Carson, Cory Gibbs when he is fit and Christian Bolanos when he receives his work permit, will add a good deal of quality to the squad , and allow us to be very competitive in this very, very tough league. "

I can't remember exactly what he spent in acquiring that lot but it was so much more than Curbs ever had or would have sqandered. Carson and Reid aside, what a waste. Faye was woeful, Walton never really played, Cory Gibbs never ever played and flitted back and forth to the States for treatment and I couldn't tell you what he looked like and Bolanos I have very little recollection of, if he played I don't recall it. 

This doesn't include Djimi Traore, who, of course got himself sent off in the first game away to the Hammers which we lost 3-1. What a player he turned out to be.......I've forgotten how much we lost when he moved on soon after.  

Further inside the programme Richard Murray talks of the selection process for the new manager and reveals that he'd had applications from an inmate HMP Blemarsh, a policeman and a professor of psychology.......... on reflection perhaps a shame that one of those didn't get the job ! Sadly we know who did.....

All quite depressing and serves as a reminder ( lest we need one ) of how long and how far the fall has been and how long we've been suffering.

However, things are looking better now and the moral is........keep a traditional normal looking programme......don't flirt with anything odd or unusual looking....... 

Sunday 2 October 2011

If anyone can..........

Yann can !

I was too worried about this game to have any contact with tv, radio or other media. I spent an hour and 50 minutes from 3pm doing household chores to keep me occupied although my thoughts weren't totally diverted from what might be happening in Sheffield.

I feared the worst and what delight then to turn on the telly to discover we were winning 2-0 with only 3 minutes to go. Further pleasure was gained from learning that Yann had again scored off the bench and with his first touch ! He's had quite an impact. Where to place the credit for his recruitment is not clear but I guess it was largely Sir Chris's input having worked with him before.

The management and scouting team deserve huge recognition for the acquisitions this season because not only have they been good, each and every one of them but they all complement the team and style of play. What more is there to come from Yann I wonder ? Remember he takes a mean free kick too !

The 4 points from the last two games is a fantastic return and I would have been pleased with two points having avoided defeat against two teams who'll be up there at the season's end.

A fantastic piece of man management after the game from Sir Chris to get the squad on the pitch for a very public debrief and praise for their efforts to date. I have issues with Powell's reluctance to make changes at times but how well has he done this season with a team that he can very much now call his own.

Praise to the owners for keeping faith with him when others might have been tempted to think things wouldn't work out. Prior to coming to us Powell was widely acknowledged in football as a coach of the utmost promise. Given his Charlton history it would have been a sad loss had we not seen him manage us and doing a good job elsewhere. Our history is littered with missed opportunities and what might have beens.

It is only a quarter way through the season but there is every cause for optimism and yesterday's win at possibly the toughest away trip in this division gives rise to every hope that this team that will deliver promotion.

The upcoming games until Preston at home on Saturday 5th November are all ones that should give a good return if we can maintain this early season form. If we can then we can look forward to our Lilliwhites clash with great confidence.

Wednesday sees us host Brentford in the paint pot thingy. I'd have no qualms with Sir Chris copying Megson when he subbed two players inside the first 20 minutes in a tie the Owls subsequenlty lost at Bradford City. Our focus must be the league and we surely have enough strength in depth to overcome Brentford anyway. The one good thing this competition offers is a chance to give games to the second string / fringe players. Sadly an international call up means no appearance for Cort who whilst he will get some playing time with Guyana won't be as useful as playing with his Charlton team mates.

Exciting times for us Addicks and I'm already wishing the week away till 3pm Saturday.