Friday, 31 December 2010
Thursday, 30 December 2010
Wednesday, 22 December 2010
I am amazed that there has not been a sniff of who is behind Peter "Reg " Varney. Sightings of Dennis Wise at the Valley maybe a clue, although it may have just been a youth player being mistaken.
I was speaking to a fellow supporter this morning who wanted it to be anyone but Wise and this led to a brief chat and a realisation that whoever is the new custodian of our obsession, they won't be good enough and that we cannot judge them on reputation alone but on their actions and those actions over a reasonable period of time.
Takeovers are notorious for ending in tears, I was at Hillsborough when an American was hailed as their saviour only a few years ago and of course they barely avoided a winding up order before Miljan Mandic came in to buy them on the cheap, another club he has beem assoicated with are Portsmouth, which he sold on only for Rednap and the new succession of owners bankrupted them and there is Chelsea where bates sold on to Abramovich in a friendly sale only now to take every opportunity to slate the current ownership, take note Richard Murray.
Richard Murray has done everything possible within the context of our recent past to make Charlton saleable in a reasonable condition and kept us out of administration. This is so different from his early Charlton involvement when he was raising money not to save the club but to fund the flames and momentum of success. Success to establish the valley, once Richard Alwen had got us there, success of winning the playoff final and success of returning to the Premier and staying there for so long. The last few years it has simply been a success to stay afloat.
Whoever is in charge tomorrow has big shoes to fill and there will be accusations of "lack of investment in the team", but we will now have business men running the club with their wallet and not their heart, unless they are charlton, accusations that they are not true charlton, accusations that they are foreign and do not understand the game (reference Sam Allardyce), accusations that they are British / local and don't have enough money and accusations that they are Dennis Wise / Peter Risdale.
Whoever Santa brings us on Christmas Eve we cannot judge their worth to the club for maybe years to come because its not what they do this week, its what they do in the coming years the stability, order and success that will count.
One final point, Santa brought us a present on Christmas Eve before and we applauded and thought our dreams had come true. That present had a smile like a cheshire cat and by the time we were able to look back on his legacy our club was broke, in more ways than one. This time Santa we are looking for a present that may not match our Christmas list like before but has longevity and lasting quality that will do what it says on the tin.
Thursday, 9 December 2010
Meanwhile, away from the spotlight of the Premiership, beavering away is Phil Parkinson, who after Charltons 4-0 home hammering by Brighton, galvanised the team to produce an almost flawless November and he has picked up the Manager of the Monthly award. Well done to Johnny Jackson who has won Player of the Month.
The irony of course is that as Pardew has failed, Parkinson has shown progress and built the fans confidence in his ability to deliver Championship football next season.
Parkie has had a difficult couple of years and the fact that he has survived in the Valley hot seat is almost a miracle and can be put down to Richard Murray, our outgoing Owner and Chair, who has seen someting in Parkinson that at times few others have.
Pardew left a side, after a 5-2 home defeat, disjointed, demoralised, over paid,un balanced and seemingly on course for relegation. Parkinson failed to save the club and to this day this is held against, but performances improved and foundations laid for the first season in the third division,which eventually resulted in a failed play off campaign.
Over time Parkie has rebuilt the playing foundations of the club and his sort term reward is November Manager of the month. Hopefully the curse of MOTM will not strike this time and we can say in a week that we continue to be present at the top of the table and are still in the FA and Johnstone paint trophy.
It is ironic that on this day Pardew is made manager of Newcastle, after failure at both Charlton and Southampton, the man that cleared up his mess at Charlton is honoured. Of course, at Southampton on the surface with a 10 point deduction, just missing out on the play offs was not a bad performance, but taking into account the deduction Saints would still have finished below us with significantly more investment and I am sure every Geordie will be ecstatic that Pardew knows how to win the Johnstone Paint Trophy.
Well done Parkie and hats off to the power of the Pardew bullshit!!
Wednesday, 8 December 2010
|I'll have five says Robbie|
He was not the messiah and he was worse than a naughty boy. The players he brought were opposite to the profile he had suggested and were gambles, young untried from the lower leagues or foreign reserves. Luke Varney is the only one who has made his way back to the peak of foorball and it has taken him a long time, no instant solution. Who has heard of our big signings then Moutakill, McCleod, Youga, Semedo and Racon. The first was finally released in the summer not having been picked for most of his three year career and has yet to find a club, the 2nd the same and has a contract with the mighty Barnet, Youga has potential but has only shown it for 1/2 a season and is now long term injured (not pardews fault) and the last two are spearheading our promotion drive from DIVISION 3. All these players were paid over the odds, on salaries that have subsequently crippled us. So his transfer policy was awful. He readily admits to a policy of buying a quantity of players and expecting most of them to fail.
Don't expect him to admit he has been wrong, he won't its the players fault, the fans fault (Don't ever clap a returning player when he is introduced before the match), he may even blame it on the seating arrangements at the ground (I kid you not)the boards fault, never his and when you get round to sacking him because he has run your club into the ground (starting a season with 3 centre backs and a plethora of midfielder) he will have written into his contract a massive payoff to be paid within a month to compensate him for his incompetence (We had to sell Varney to pay for it). We made mistakes having already made the mistake of employing him, I hope you don't. My final word is I hope he tries to tap up Andy Carolls girlfriend, 'cause I would love to see him take on Duncan Fergusons clone child.
Assuming Pardew does go through you will have had him and Dowie in your ranks the architects of our demise, you should have gone for Curbs, dour and boring he would still have done a great job for you.
(First posted on BBC 606)
Saturday, 4 December 2010
I have retained at times the naivety that FIFA and EUFA are there for the benefit of football fans and for the protection of the game. This week has opened my eyes to this naivety and this is not sweet innocence, its stupidity.
In 2012 Team, GB will be putting forward a team to compete at the London Olympics,it will be the first time that professional GB will compete. My dissapointment has been that the home country federations have steadfastly refused to join host nation, England, in a GB team.
I saw this stance as short sighted, parochial and insular. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland claimed that FIFA would use this joint team to force GB to operate as a single force in future tournaments.
This is my naivety, I believed that when FIFA had assured GB that this would not be the case they could be trusted. Why would FIFA want to consolidate four nations into one, after all, following the break up of the soviet empire they were willing to expand the nations of FIFA enourmously and of course we have seen them hand a word cup to minnows Quatar.
As I say, FIFA had promised that they would not force a GB team to compete jointly and I thought a declaration such as that would never be reneged on.
This week has proved to me that I was naive, Blatter cannot be trusted. He is the Emporer and King maker and I reluctantly say appears anti English. We will never host a World Cup while he is in charge.
FIFA stitched up England this week, not decided on a better bid, but determined to humiliate a country which had through its freedom and liberty exposed corruption in FIFA's ranks. With hindsight, it was like watching the school bully, the flash kid at school being pursued by the little bit over desperate, slightly plain looking girl from the posh part of town. The bully encouraged her all along made her think she was special but all along he planned to humiliate her in front of the whole school. The FIFA committee teased us, they promised us their hearts (votes) and when we prostrated ourselves in front of them, humiliated oursleves with our current leader, our future king and our golden boy, they laughed at us turned away and walked arm in arm with an Eastern European pimps daughter, french kissing her to add effect.
So how can we trust FIFA to allow a joint team to represent GB and not have it held against us? There is only one answer, we can't, so whatever my dream is for joint ventures in the Olympics, it cannot be allowed to happen because we cannot trust the word of FIFA, not now - not ever.
Sunday, 21 November 2010
The club are going to undertake more of these checks and I hope that they do. When we are crying out for revenue we should not be expecting our own fans to be shafting the club.
If I was the club I would confiscate the season tickets until the owner pays up the full amount, within a certain time period and at the end of that period print their names on the official site and in the program,although I suspect that this would be against their Human Rights.
Friday, 19 November 2010
|Charlton meet Yeovil in the Rose of Denmark prior to the 3-2 FA Cup. Memories when we were divisions apart. A youthful Adrian Speller in the foreground and me in the centre, not to mention young Portchs and Montgomery's.|
Tomorrow both teams are in 2nd place, us from the top and Yeovil from the bottom. On paper and following a fantastic performance performance since Brighton at home and a five match losing streak for Yeovil, we should come out comfortable winners, but life is never so predictable and the goal fest we have recently seen has come against teams coming at us, Yeovil will sit back and look to take us on the break, the onus on us will be to break them down. In years gone past this would worry me, but with Lee Martin or Smoking Joe, Waggy and Benson there is a great movement up front which should allow us to break down their defence.
So a return of Yeovil tomorrow should see us adding another 3 points and set us up nicely for the out of form Pirates, before we return to next weeks cup game versus Luton. My team for tomorrow is
Saturday, 13 November 2010
On the 17th October I headlined my post “The next four games – Parkies P45” , I wrote “The key to any management role in football is managing players and if Parkinson is to survive he has to manage this lot now, he needs to get them fired up in the right way and they need to be getting results. Whether they are the best players ever to don a Charlton shirt (they are not) does not matter at this level they are capable of more than the results that they are showing currently and it is the managers job to realise this. In my opinion, Parkie has four games to generate this realisation – I hope he does.”
After the debacle at the Valley of Brighton,I could not see a point coming from the next four games and my thoughts had turned reluctantly to accepting that Friends day at the Yeovil match will be anything but friendly for Parkie if he was still here. Instead our record has been:-
P W D L F A Pts
1 1 0 0 1 0 3
3 3 0 0 12 4 9
2 1 1 0 1 0
6 5 1 0 13 4 12
We are no longer relying one player as we have done in the past, when Reid is seen as the key man he gets injured and Anyinsah becomes the main man, he gets injured and we still turn in a performance. Goals are coming from all players Benson and Waggie at the topof the scoring charts, but supported by Jackson, Martin, two goals today Anyinsah.
Jacksons move to the left side of midfield has given us stability on the left without the flair of Reid but a sound platform for building attacks and for finishing them off.
There are many questions asking how we turned this position round, is it the players gelling, has Parkie sitting with them and talking to them done it, has Murray kicked Parkie up the bum- we don’t know but whatever the answer is Parkie takes the majority of the credit as he deserves to, alongside his coaching team.
Compared to equivalent matches last season we now have much in credit 28 points v 22 points.
(since when did they relegate four teams from Div1)
Forgetting about the cup game, and tempting fate, we have Yeovil coming up next week and Bristol Roves, neither of whom are having their best seasons, a difficult trip away to Rochdale and then Warsaw at home. Injury and form willing we could be sitting on another 9 points by the time we go to Hartlepool in December. These up and coming four games pose a different challenge from the last four. The last four last year generated 3 points, this year they generated 12, the next four produced 12 points – expectations are high, both from history and from form. Parkie is flavour of the month now, the next month will be interesting and on top of it all we could be a game closer to Wembley and another closer to a big money 3rd round FA Cup tie. 2nd place now but more importantly lets hope 2nd place in May.
Saturday, 6 November 2010
Despite my concerns that we would only come away from this game with a draw, I am disappointed at todays result. A draw at Barnet means that between last weeks game with Sheffield Wednesday and Bristol Rovers on 23rd November we would have played 8 games, sufficient to stretch a squad of our resources, especially one where our second string forward line is failing to fire.
Tuesdays Southend JPT fixture throws up a quandary in selection for Parkie. Martin will be back available, but should Parkie go for broke and look to win or should we be looking to sacrifice the JPT for the greater riches of the League.
I have a view born out of experience of the League Cup in the 80's and 90's, when a number of teams reached Wembley in the League Cup, lost but then went on to win in the FA Cup. I would like a day out in the JPT at Wembley for the experience, but more for the players experience to holdin store for a potential Play Off final. If they can get over the awe of being in the stadium in the JPT then maybe there is an advantage for the Play Off final, and before anyone else says it there are a lot of if's and quite a few minutes of football to get there. That said I would like Parkie to go for it on Tuesday, but also be sensible in his selection.
Southend will face a similar dilemma having only drawn today and wanting to return to the third tier first time of asking, whilst next weeks opponents Peterborough drew at Stockport but do not have a midweek game.
Whilst I would like to take points from The Posh, that will not be easy, however after that we have Yeovil and Bristol Rovers at home, if we do not suffer from the fatigue of allthese games then I would expect 6 points from these games and anything more will be a bonus.
The next 17 days and 5 games will put our squad, which contains a number of players with poor fitness records under considerable stress and the fitness, physio and medical team are about to earn their corn.
The achievement of 3,000 posts was forecast by Nostradamus to Herald the sun setting over the ownership of Richard Maurray and a new dawn of glorious ownership and future success at The Valley
Of course, it may not happen quite yet!!
Friday, 5 November 2010
Do you remember when as a third division club Charlton made its way to the quarter finals of the FA Cup. No ……. Hmmm, so it was a dream, damn, so history won't repeat itself, cause it never happened – damn!
So the De Ja Vue must be that last seasons pre season we were beaten and this season the same thing happened Then we were drawn in the cup (last season JPTY at home, this season FA Cup away),will history repeat it self?
Barnet are sitting proudly, holding the rest of the League up, in 24th place in Division 4 (League 2 in modern speak). Their most recent result was a 3-0 loss to Stevenage and earlier this season they lost 7-0 to Barnet On the face of it this does not look like we are facing a Northwich Victoria, but how often have our expectations been dashed?
It is going to be an interesting dilemma for Parkie on who to pick, who to rest.
My head says we'll win easily, but my heart says we'll get a draw and get back to the Valley, but what I can't see a defeat in anyway, so roll on the draw on Sunday.
Tuesday, 2 November 2010
Only just over two weeks ago the Valley was a place of woe, the defenders of Phil Parkinson were devoid of excuses and the Parkie out brigade were in full voice. Like in an election decisions are not made by the majority but those shady middle grounders who are swayed from one camp to another and Parkies camp was emptying faster than a brothel during a police raid! A two and a half weeks later and morale has turned full circle 3 wins, two away nine points and we are in the play off zone with only a few points separating 9th place from second. Benson, that useless striker is now on fire, but then again he only scores goals!!! Two clean sheets in a row, its coming together for Parkinson, but the road to the Championship is a long one and the downer tonight was that everbody around us won, even Colchester who were 2-0 down to neighbours and relegation hopefuls Orient. Having got rid of the smug bar steward, Southampton are looking string under the stewardship of Ian Adkins.
Tonights 3-0 win at the County Ground, Swindon is partial revenge for their victory in the play off semi finals last season. What has been good tonight has been that we are developing a momentum and whilst we did not have the start we had last season, in Joe Anyinsah and Paul Benson we have a partnership that is causing opposition defenders not just problems but to be scared, along with Waggy, Jackson we have as balanced attack as I can remember since Hunt and Mendonca. There are some that may only give credit to the management grudgingly but they took a lot of stick after Brighton so the praise now should be fulsome in its delivery.
When we look at the position against the equivalent opposition last season we have now overtaken the points total and the closeness of the division puts us just off the automatics. Even if we lose the next two games we will not fall below last years equivalent and whilst the next league match will be difficult Peterboro away, we should clean up against Yeovil and Bristol Rovers at home.
If you like your stats and comparisons against last season, then I can thoroughly recommend AFKA's stat attack including Sheff Weds game on Charlton Life, which reviews this seasons player performances as recorded after each game by attendees, as well as general stats which you could condemn you to being a stato or just be interesting reading. Click here to go to the stats, These were referred to on BBC London during todays commentary.
As we move into two cup games before the next league match we have a chance to recharge some players batteries and give other the opportunity to stretch their legs. Unfortunately from a revenue perspective these cups are important, in the JPT we have a realistic chance of getting to Wembley and the revenue from that and if we can beat Barnet then we are only a game away from a potential money spinner in the third round, so Parkinson has a difficult decision to make the league is so important that it must take precedence over every thing else.
So well done tonight, but lets remember we are only as good as our next result .. roll on Barnet.
Wednesday, 27 October 2010
He recently opened his career scoring account with a penalty in a shootout in the Johnstone Paint Trophy. One would hope that this is one returning player who won't be scoring against us on Saturday, although he could do equal damage by keeping a clean sheet and I fear that maybe our fate on Saturday.
I know it irritated Pardew but I always applaud former players and enjoy seeing them play well, as long as they are on the losing side. Unfortunately for Weaver he plays in a position where I cannot hope he plays well, we are due a good win at home and it would be nice to do it against one of the promotion favourites. A win on Saturday puts us back into the promotion frame, if we can keep pace with the leading pack then we could end this season in the place from which Weaver helped take us!!
Saturday, 23 October 2010
Putting the result in context, last season we were beaten 3-1 in this furthest out post before Scotland. Only 4 of the squad on that day were in today's squad. Sam, Bailey, Burton and Youga were all in the starting line up and the consensus seems to be that they are better than their replacements, so any victory has to be seen as a great turnaround and a pretty decent result especially given what we saw last week.
Monday, 18 October 2010
Poor old Phil,it never rains but it pours and we have a storm of monsoon proportions over The Valley. If losing by 4 goals on Saturday was not bad enough or the increase in chatter on the message boards over his departure, one of his saving graces, the teams creative force is out not just for the visit to Carlisle but for the duration of the difficult sequence of matches that I pointed out previously.
I thought when Reid went down it was fairly innocuous, a bit like another left sided player a year or so ago – Kelly Youga. He is out for at least a month missing potentially, at least, Carlisle, Swindon, Peterborough and Sheffield Wednesday, plus the JPT and the FA Cup.
The Yeovil game will be the anniversary of Pardews departure, whilst reeds departure was following a poor performance in the league cup …. Omens ? I hope not and that by then the atmosphere and results have turned around.
I was going to write that Carlisle is a big test, but that's daft, every game now is a big test and Parkies selection will be important for this game as it will form the foundations of the recovery or decline.
For me the team for Saturday should be as follows:-
Francis Dailly Fortune Fry
Martin Semedo or McCormack Racon Jackson
Worner, Semedo or McCormack, Wagstaff, Doherty, Benson, Sodje, Jenkinson
Its hard on Wagstaff our top scorer but I feel he is too one dimensional and better to come on in the second half when his pace can take the tired defence apart. Since his first game sending off, Semedo has not been the player he can be and Parkie needs to take the shackles off or bring in McCormack. Instead of having Martin or Wagstaff replace Reid, Jackson offers an option of solidity on the left hand side, strong crossing and a natural defender in Fry. Trying to work out the team for Saturday makes you really realise the paucity of our squad and we only have two injuries.
Its going to be a tough few weeks and Reids injury has done nothing to make it any easier, lets hope that the first test won't see Carlisle raining on our parade.
Sunday, 17 October 2010
A good nights sleep can put things in perspective, sleep allows the brain to process events of the day. Sadly last nights sleep has done nothing to lift my mood following yesterday. Of course, having immersed myself in Charlton Life, instead of watching Strictly come dancing.", I am more negative than I was. Where I saw, at least in the first half, hope and optimism, now it is just a sadness. Mind you the sound of the membership of Charlton Life slitting their wrists is upsetting, in the extreme. In fact there are two noises coming from CL, the slitting of wrists and the crashing of draws, as they close and Season Tickets are locked inside, with the promise of never to see the light of day until Parkinson is removed.
I am and have been a Parkinson supporter or apologist, as some would say. I am sure that this will not be seen as a revelation to both of the readers of this blog, I have previously written of my support for him and as I wrote yesterday and earlier in the week, the next five games, including yesterday, are critical. To come out with less than 9 points, as a minimum would make this seasons target of promotion a huge mountain to climb.
The next few games may not just determine the fate of our promotion challenge but also the fate of our manager. There are already calls for Parkinson to walk, without receiving the contractual pay off, I don't agree with that but would hope that it would be negotiated on an monthly payment basis till the summer when the contract terminates.
What of the Parkinson tenure and its end, if this is to be such a situation. When Curbishley went, my feelings were of a job well done and a time to move on, the next level, which turned out to a few strata below where we were, with Dowie it was shock and confusion, Reed it was inevitable and maybe the closest to how I feel now and with Pardew well that was different. Pardew was arrogant, deflected blame, destroyed our club and to this day would not accept the troubles were his, the 5-2 home defeat by Sheffield United, a team we had accompanied as we left the premiership, was almost a blessed relief, as it forced the boards hand. Pardew left with a £1m in his pocket, Parkie will receive nothing in comparison.
My feelings if Parkinson were to go are very different from those that surround Pardew, who brought him to the club. I like Parkinson, I have met him and chatted with him, he is a thoroughly nice guy. I believe he is doing his best and by all accounts he works his butt off for the club. A former boss of mine once said he does not care how hard people work, he was only interested in results and for Parkinson, that boss is the crowd.
I have said it before, I believe that Parkinson has been dealt a bad hand, he has never had the money that the previously mentioned managers had, although Curbishley came from a similar foundation that included free Bumsteads and Nelsons. When he took over the management of the club he came with the baggage of being Pardews assistant and part of the team that had seen a decline from Premier to Championship, and a failure then to turn results to avoid relegation to where we are now, despite an improvement in performances. Many fans have never forgiven him for being part of Pardews team and others for being in charge of the relegation and that is understandable. I have seen him make tactical changes, some have worked some have not and to be honest he is probably no worse or better than half the managers at League level The key to any management role in football is managing players and if Parkinson is to survive he has to manage this lot now, he needs to get them fired up in the right way and they need to be getting results. Whether they are the best players ever to don a Charlton shirt (they are not) does not matter at this level they are capable of more than the results that they are showing currently and it is the managers job to realise this. In my opinion, Parkie has four games to generate this realisation – I hope he does.
Saturday, 16 October 2010
My mate John was on family business today, so he generously allowed me to use his season ticket ……… some times the generosity of others can be painful and I do wonder if he had had a premonition of things to come.
The good news is that we got no points from this fixture last year so not getting any this year does not disturb our this year last year comparison and if that sounds like clutching at straws well you could be right. They say every silver lining has a cloud and on this occaision it is a great big dirty grey one.
However, before I comment on Charlton, let me say Brighton and Hove Albion were a credit to their manager and the 3,500 fans who were allowed to watch them at the Valley. I think having only missed Oldham at home this season and Brentford at home last season, this was the best team to come to the Valley at this level of football. Gus Poyet is currently on his first managerial role, having cut his coaching teeth at Spurs and Leeds and he seems to me to be punching below his weight at this level and I doubt he will be at Brighton in 12 months time. He has turned round a very poor Brighton side that came to the Valley and took three points last season into a very good Brighton side that came today and left with a full house on terms of points and score.
At the out set let me state that I felt until the second goal we were in this game, but the second killed us. I expect, without checking the records, that the last team to win by a four goal margin at the Valley would have been one of the premier league top four during the golden age. That said Brighton were not four goals better, until maybe the last 15 minutes and a 2-0 score line would have been fairer.
Brighton have taught us a lesson today and that lesson is about being sharp up front, creating and taking chances. They did not make too many in the first half and in fact the one they scored from was made by us, a corner came in poorly cleared to the right, crossed back in and in the back of the net. The first half saw both teams pushing the ball forward and Abbot almost headed in from a sharp cross, but put it just wide of the post
As in the first half the second half started with Charlton attacking and giving hope that we would get back in the game but we lack penetration and cutting edge, taking too long to get the ball in where it hurts, allowing the defenders to get back into position and cover attacks. We have yet to win a penalty this season. Is this because of incompetent referees or is it a more fundamental, is it about the way we play. You would have thought with Benson, Reed, Martin and Wagstaff in the side we would have the benefit if their speed either creating chances or creating penalties, but maybe the issue is that we are not getting into the penalty area with any force or venom.
What happened to the Johny Jackson that we had on loan last season, this Johny Jackson is a pale imitation and a player of his experience should never have attempted the back pass he did. He is totally responsible for the second goal, although I thought Elliot could have done better. Having made this error, the real failing was letting our heads drop, after that we were gone. The third goal was Lua Lua's first touch of the ball and if anyone had watched last weeks The Championship, they would have blocked out the opportunity instead we were three down.
The fourth goal was just one of those last minute things – demoralised team, pushing for something they could call salvation and the team that are up for it breakaway and score.
The players have to take responsibility for this defeat and the level of it. As we matched Brighton, we did ourselves in, as they say - poor defending from a corner, bad back pass and then it is gone, the opportunity no longer exists. For the first two goals I really don't think you can put the fallibility of the players on Parkinson, seriously. I blame Parkinson for our failure to hurt teams in the box and the failure to either get a team together or if he has then a failure to get them to gel consistently and for a sustained 90 minutes.
The crowd overall was very positive and supportive till the team capitulated and then the boos came, that isn't something any of us anti booers can really object to, 0-4 at home in the third division at home. However two things I do object to,the first is the guy who sat in front of me (this used to be my seat, so he has sat in front of me for about 3 years) shouting across to the Brighton fans your fxxxing cxxxx, to me this is unnecessary language, but when he has a child with him who is less than 10 years old, you can only wonder at his parenting skills and how she will grow up, as he left he shouted to the player "you should be ashamed of yours selves" – true, but he is a fine one to speak and secondly and I will risk getting slaughtered for this, the guy who approached Parkinson in the coaching area, I'm sorry but however you feel, that is not on .
Today was the first part of our ordeal of 5 games, we failed and the minimum of 6 points from 15 looks difficult, that said we won't see another Brighton at the Valley again this season, unless it's a cup.
Thanks for your generosity John, but today it hurt.
Ps Charlton Life has blown a fuse presumably from all the wrist slitting this is the message I am getting-
You don't have permission to access /forum/ on this server.
Additionally, a 404 Not Found error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.
Apache/1.3.41 Server at charltonlife.com Port 80"
Thursday, 14 October 2010
As I sit in the jury waiting room eager to adjudicate on the dispensation of justice on behalf of her majesty, my thoughts turn to the forthcoming five fixtures. Brighton, Sheffield Wednesday, at home, Carlisle, Peterborough, Swindon away. The next five fixtures will be a trial by ordeal. If we come out of that lot with more than 9 points then the jury's verdict of the season so far and future prospects will be totally positive, however if we come out with six or less the fans verdict will be that Parkie is guilty of an inability to manage and will only feel that justice has been done when we see the back of him, Breaker and maybe Kinsella.
Our record at The Valley is an enviable one, played four, eight points, despite some disjointed un inspiring performances. 45 minutes here and there are not enough to cajole the faithful into loud raucous support, but it does lay foundations and I believe confidence of the team. The biggest test for the team this season at home comes this weekend , with the visit of table topping Brighton and Hove Albion. Managed by Guy Poyet, they have turned around their disappointing form of last season to be a confident formidable out fit. One of their season highlights from last year was their visit to The Valley when they toppled promotion chasing Charlton in a 2-1 victory, Richardson scoring with a daisy cutter. Brighton's charge stalled last week as the linesman and Bournemouth team conspired to turn the referee's legitimate award of a free kick into a penalty in injury time. For the players of Brighton it must be soul destroying to play at the Withdean where the fans are remote from the pitch due to a running track (something that west ham can look forward to if their Olympic stadium bid goes through). Brighton will have no concerns about a stadium that dissipates sound when they come to the Valley. The Jimmy Seed is probably the best stand in the valley for dispersion of sound towards the pitch. The low roof and traditional old fashioned build of the stand works to the advantage of the opposition and one of Pardoo's few intelligent remarks was that the away fans should not be given the benefit of that stand. Health & Safety fan security have prevented the move to some of the empty spaces at the side of the pitch. I have been an advocate of cutting large holes through the sides of the stand and insulating the roof with sound absorbing material.
The Brighton players will be up for this as they bring 3,500 fans to fill Jimmy Seed and pick off a few seats in the home end. We could convince our selves that this is a lost game before we begin. To do so however we need to come out of the blocks as we did for Dagenham & Redbridge and keep it going for a full 90 minutes. This is the first time we have had a team at the valley who will be attacking us from the off, although you could justifiably argue that Notts County soon realised that we were there for the taking. Since Notts County the team have shown some improvement and cohesion and we have started to see Benson repay the investment in him. With Brighton coming at us they will also be vulnerable to our attacks. Not playing against a packed defence we can allow our team to be expansive in their play. As you go down the leagues it is rarer and rarer to find quality creative midfielders that can unlock defences, with Brighton coming at us we can instead of working out how to unlock the defence we can focus on piercing it with through balls, crosses and counter attacks.
With Francis being absent last week, this weeks target for the fans has been Thierry Racon, who has been criticised for his contribution and positional play. I'm not the biggest fan of young terry, but when he is criticised by some based on radio commentaries it does seem a bit unfair. Thierry has bundles of potential, the good news is that with each game he is improving and that can only be good, he does need to score more goals and we know that he has a vicious long shot, something the club misses at the moment. One of the biggest pluses for Racon is that Frances will be back on Saturday.
It is I going to be an interesting match and one where I think the opposition will be strong enough and clever enough to know that Reid is the best creative player in the team, and will put two / three players on him, that will leave space elsewhere and we need to have a strategy for exploiting this.
Once we get past Brighton for better or for worse we face further challenges, as I said at the beginning we face a trial by ordeal, but if we can get through it half intact then this could be a great season.
Saturday, 9 October 2010
Thursday, 7 October 2010
The northern hard men of Charlton go to the southern softies of Plymouth on Saturday after a mixed bag of away results over the last few days. Of course calling Plymouth softies does not reflect the steel that our players have faced from Plymouth in recent meetings. Three years ago in the Championship, the classy, Todorov's career was virtually ended by a callous unpunished foul at the Valley and later that season, having gone out on loan, McLeod faced similar treatment from the same player. Managers and personnel, let alone divisions have changed since then, but make no mistake this is a hugely important game for both sides.
At the risk of having our usual hopes and expectations being dashed on the rocks of reality, Charlton have every chance of getting something out of this game, having figuratively pulled their socks up against MK Dons and turned a deficit into a victory. Following a morale sapping defeat at Brentford on Saturday and goal after 2 minutes by former Man U player Kuke "Spotty" Chadwick – watch out Lee Martin and take note just because you came from the Man U academy does not mean you have a divine right to be a star, you have to work at not only your tricks but also your end product, or you could end up in a soulless town like Milton Keynes to ply your trade - it would not be unexpected for the team devoid of cohesion and confidence to crumble. From reports we may not have crumbled but we were not good in that first half. However a stern talking to or whatever happens behind those closed doors at half time and we are still Wembley bound.
Plymouth were one of my favourites for the top two this season, but they are languishing in 17th place three points behind Charlton with a similar last 6 games record 2-2-2. The fans must be disappointed with their big managerial recruit, Peter Reid who I am sure raised expectations of glory. Like us there is plenty of time to kick on for the pilgrims, Norwich and Millwall proved that last season, but with every match that goes past more pressure comes into play.
For us we have two players on fire at the moment, Reid and Wagstaff. At this rate Waggy could be a 20 goal man this season, instead of his key role being creating goals he is turning into the main man converting them, whilst without Reid there would be nobody loading the bullets. Reids crosses are proving invaluable but we have to be cautious, this time last season Lloyd Sam was in tremendous form and stood out as a class player in the team. Then opposition mangers double / triple marked him and for the rest of the season he was noted for his anonymity and the rest of the team failed to take advantage of the space created by defenders being drawn to him. Don't be surprised if Reid starts to fade as once again the opposition realise that if you cut off the supply, you cut off the goals and despite today's reassurance by Parky, we are scoring precious few of those.
If Reid does have reason to fade then we need players to step up to the plate. Martin has looked the part, but flatters to deceive, he needs to use his quick feet to hurt the opposition, not to just make them look stupid. Semedo is looking decidedly under whelmed with life and has lost some of that spark we know he has, maybe the sending off in the first game of the season has affected him, but he just has to get over it and play his normal game, along with Racon they have to boss the game not allow it to pass them by, or in Racons case get a decent loan in and ship Racon out in January, he has the ability now he has to deliver, he has been with us for too long now without achieving.
John Fortune has made an assured return to the club and alongside Dailly, I think we have the making of a decent central defence. Unfortunately Doherty and llerra may not win a turning speed competition with the QE2. Francis continues to be the focus of the boo boys and my assessment of him is that he has developed well defensively, but lets himself down with his distribution and that has to get better, as good defensive work is useless if we are just going to have the opposition come back at us. With Fry being injured Johny Jackson will revert to left back again, a position in which he excelled last season on his short loan, but this season has seemed less self assured.
Elliot is back, playing his third game in a week, Worner is back on the bench without having disgraced himself, although questions have been raised as to how he can describe himself as over 6 foot and presumably Luke Daniels is back in the black country with Deano.
Singularly this season we have failed to play for a full 90 minutes, if we do then I am sure we will get something out of this game, but if we don't then I can see another west country disappointment for the addicted faithful.
Saturday, 2 October 2010
We have been waiting for performances and results to match, but we did not expect that to materialise with the performance being poor and the result being unacceptable, against the bottom of the table team. Brentford, Tranmere and Dagenham & Redbridge - bottom of the table clubs, we cannot expect to get even a play off place if we do not take maximum points from clubs of this level.
We may have had a lot of poor decisions from the officials, however Parkie has focussed on this too much - poor decisions happen, as the author of Dr Kish has pointed out to me recently, we have also had decisions go for us, but we are fans and we have selective myopia. Parkie cannot influence referees decisions after they have been made, but instead of letting the players feel sorry of themselves, he needs to motivate players using every bad decision ever given against them - Right the wrong, don't bemoan the past.
I'm listening to Parkie on the radio and he is saying that the players did not come out for the first half with the right attitude, he says that the players have let "us" down, but for me the management team have let "us" down by allowing a team to come out with anything other than the right attitude. BBC London have criticised him for putting all the blame on the players and I have to say I feel that Parkie and his management team should be holding their hands up and taking a hefty level of responsibility.
Tuesday sees us appear on Sky for the second time and viewers will wonder what happened to the fight that they saw at Orient, not that many weeks ago but none will be wondering more than Charltons own fans. We have to play 6 regular players in the JPT and I expect Dailly to make his return for match practice. I would like to say we should rest players to protect them from injury prior to Plymouth, but in all honesty there is not a single player that I feel we would miss if he got injured for Plymouth.
Thursday, 30 September 2010
Comparisons can be misleading, on the one hand if you follow the famous Dick Shephards same time last year comparison of the nine games so far things do not look too good.
Three wins down, two losses up and short of 9 goals, despite 4 new strikers since then. Of course, then we were on a record run that gave Parkie a record never achieved by a Charlton manager before. That form raised our expectations, but it soon petered out and after a difficult post Christmas period we held onto 4th and the rest is history.
Hopefully this season we are starting slow and our momentum will increase till we come up on the rails for promotion in May. Despite the moans and groans, and to be fair the performances that have left a bit to desire, when compared to the similar matches last season things are not too bad as we trail by only two points. Personally, I would expect us to beat a bottom of the table team on Saturday, which would put us back on par, followed by Plymouth when we should see the return of Christian Dailly. Of course, I am the eternal optimist and we could also be 6 points off par by the time Brighton come to play.
It's a while since I have written about Charltons Women or even on a wider scale womens football or an even wider scale women in sport. I think it maybe partly from the embarrassment last season of a few days after the defeat at the Den, sneaking back and watching Englands Women defeat Spains Women 1-0, on their victorious road to the world cup finals next year. I was ready over the next few days to answer anyone who had noticed me there with, "No you must be mistaken, I was in a gay bondage bar." Infinitely less embarrassing than being in the Den voluntarily not watching Charlton.
Although still criminally under exposed, women's sport in Britain, appears to be in the fullest of health. Women's Cricketers are on top of the world having won the 2009 world cup, the rugby team were beaten world cup finalists and the GB Hockey team picked up their first ever medal – a bronze – in the recent world cup.
I first watched womens football at the Valley, when the England team took on Croatia in a friendly, subsequently I watched a few Charlton Womens matches when they were played at the Valley, in fact I watched them before they were reincarnated from Croydon Ladies, at the Croydon sports arena. I habe a photo of me with Casey Stoney – current England player and former Charlton captain and the media darling when an anti Charlton spokesperson was being sought following the disbandment of the Ladies after male relegation.
Charltons women were initially run separately from the club set up and separate sponsors were sought for them and through Alan Mercer – "Merc" to his mates, , Footdown came forward. Latter it is alleged that pressure was put on Footdown to give up sponsorship so that the mens sponsors could be rolled over onto the women, so to speak!
But now its has gone a full circle, Paul Mortimers team play in a kit supplied by Macron but the design is different from the men's team and KRBS, have probably, decided that they have plunged too much money into the club and a fans company has picked up the womens shirts. Stephen King – hopefully not the author –has already been a sponsor of Casey through his company PHSC Plc. So now the gap between the Womens team and the Mens team is complete, different owner ship (the women's team is part of the community scheme), their own website, different league, different kit and different sponsors. It's a shame because I used to enjoy the Valley nights, singing for the diminutive Eartha Pond (when I say diminutive, I really mean bult like a brick outhouse).
A lot of people look at womens football and negatively compare it with the men's game. However to really appreciate the women's game you have to think of it as something to be viewed independently of any other sport. You don't compare five a side football with the eleven a side game and that is how you should look at the women's game.
Unfortunately, the successes of yester year are not being repeated by the current crop, they have played 5 games this season and lost all of their league games. The only positive being the one win in the cup against Millwall, this despite optimistic noises pre season. That said if you read the write ups we apparently have drawn against Keynsham Town.
I am hoping that at some stage the women do come back to the Valley and we see one or two matches, in the meantime I'll look forward to watching England in next years world cup hope in my heart and in the dressing room and no wags in sight … well only a few!!
Sunday, 26 September 2010
We need to go up this season or we will have another staff turn around next season and each time we do that, we go down a level in staff on the pitch. in fact, come January if we are not competing then the trio of Semedo, Youga and Racon could be on there way.
We can't lose ppoints against teams like Tranmere and Dgenham if we are going to go up, especially if we take the lead, not once but three times with the third with only minutes to play.
Benson either needs to break his duck or have a spell on the bench,I htnk at the moment we have more strikers than number of goals scored by a striker. Its worrying that JohnStill has said we do not play to Bensons strengths, i don't think a 30 year old player is bought to change the way he plays.
The forwards are clearly suffering form a bit of confodence defecit, which means they are taking too long over shots on target, allowing defenders and keepers to get in there and block.
Tuesday see's the Dons come over,we thrashed them last year but I worry that this season will see them gain their revenge.
Thursday, 23 September 2010
Once Parkie has set his stall out he will go back to Sparrows Lane and prepare for two home games in a row. If we can get all six points we can be top of the table with other results going for us and calm will descend on the message boards till the next game.
I cannot see anything less than a victory against Daggers and am hoping for a goal for Benson so he can kick start his short charlton career, however MK Dons will be a different kettle of fish and my money would be on a draw or a 1-0 either way.
Once we have those two out of the way, we are back on the road to conquerors of Everton, Brentford. The cup run for them could do us a favour,as hopefully they take their eye of the ball, however whether they do or not,Parkinson needs to get our away set up sorted as we will need to be performing better on the road if we are to make anything of this season.
I am expecting 5 points out of the next 9, but hoping for 7.
Tuesday, 21 September 2010
|Eric Gates one of Bobby Robsons Ugly's and the first scorer against Charlton at Selhurst|
Monday, 20 September 2010
I have been to Q&A's with Pardew and last year at the Valley with Parkie before and I can tell you a night with Parkie is good fun and he is straight and honest. Sometimes seen as detrimental, but i would say a real positive, Parkie comes over as a nice guy and for those of us with memories of Curbs in his early days there are many similarities.
The night is good value for money.
Bromely Addicks Face Book site can be accessed at http://tinyurl.com/368w562
Sunday, 12 September 2010
Last week an 18 year old trialist with Cambridge United, who had just played his first game for their reserves was shot dead in Peckham. This former Dulwich Hamlets youth player was by all accounts an innocent victim. A number of Dulwich players had played with Rio McFarlane and were his freinds, but the FA refused to allow the Hamlets game on the 4th of September to be postponed, despite the agreement of Chatham Town, Hamlets lost.
As Blackpool celebrated their latest extraordinary win in the premier league they honoured their youth coach Gary Parkinson who has sufferred a stroke and is "very poorly".
Its a great game, a beautiful but its not more important than many other things.
Saturday, 11 September 2010
Still we got three points, we're only two points and 6 goals off the top spot. It is a long time if ever that I have seen a match where we have been so over run and come out with one point let alone three. There have been the odd games where we have dominated but we have not been rewarded with points.
The plus points were:-
- a win,
- meeting Kings HillAddick,
- meeting up with Henry Irving and Dr Kish,
- Parkie realising that McCormack and Semedo were not working and actually changing it at half time,
- Semedo being Captain
- Robbie Elliot
- Further substitutions that worked
- Winning when we played awfully
- They were bloody awful
- The failure of our starting forwards to make an impact
- They really were awful
- The team need time to gel, but it is worrying that there are no perceptible signs of it happening.
- They were so so awful.
- McCormacks first half performance.
But what was the worst part of the day, was that when my mate got back to where he had parked his car, it was obvious that someone had caved in the car window and he had been a victim of car theft, so it was not just Notts County who had someting stolen while at the Valley today!!!
Friday, 10 September 2010
After two straight away defeats the pressure (IMHO unfairly) is rising for Parkie and the team. Woe betide us if we go a goal down tomorrow against one of the oldest clubs in the world, Notts County. I can hear the boos already. But honestly we are only a few games in and we need players to bed in and learn to work with each other. Sometimes this can take a game or two, others it can take a while. Would we rather we started like a steam train, ala last season and peter out or would we like to do a Millwall and rush for the finishing line and get the enormous prize of a bronze and promotion.
I'm going for a dull game at the Valley tomorrow, with us grinding out a 2-1 victory.
Ps Any chance of not singing the incest song?
*Much appreciated Kings Hill