Friday, 2 December 2016

Another New Dawn !

Just waiting for Skip to lift it up next May !

Another quiet week in S.E.7 then !

Mind you, it wouldn’t be the same if there were a week where pretty much nothing happened. As far as I can see a week where Roly and Katrien are exposed for further ridicule would appear to be de rigueur.

Emails from Roly to Sir Chris are made public and clearly demonstrate that the owner was interfering with team selection. However, Roland confirms that he hasn’t ever interfered with team selection - just made a couple of suggestions as you do ! Hmm !

However, we knew all this before of course because Katrien told us, so it must be true ! Oh ye of little faith !

Aside from the team selection, the man offers up advice on formations and is patronising in the extreme. I very much doubt Roly treats his immediate managers in the businesses in which he’s made his fortune in this fashion. Anyone would be off like a shot if so ( unless you’re the CEO of a London football club )..

We really ought to try and break down the 1.5% of his time that he allegedly devotes to our club. Clearly none of it is spent of planning ( he does have a plan doesn’t he ? ) and it would appear it is almost entirely spent on explaining the mess he and his sidekick have created.

With each passing day he becomes more of a public laughing stock. His credibility is on a par with Katrien’s. How he ever succeeded in business is a bigger mystery than why he bought our club.

Anyway back to the manager and Robinson is the latest person to keep the seat warm in the  greatest game of managerial musical chairs sans la musique – there’s nothing to sing about !

This is an odd game with a potential conflict of interest. Robinson allegedly wants Barker ( the current MK Dons boss ) to join his managerial team. If so and you’re in Barker’s shoes what do you do ?

Hmmm ! A right old dilemma and no mistake.

If Barker does join Robinson’s team he’ll find himself working alongside Chris O’Loughlin. He’d be forgiven for asking “ Chris who ? “.

At this week’s press conferences Robinson said that he had personally asked for CO’L to stay on as he was scheduled to leave. I’m finding it hard to believe that he wants someone retained whom he’s barely met as far as I know. In any case managers usually prefer to bring in their own team.

Possibly even more remarkable is that CO’L was originally appointed to the football management team for about a month ? Really ? How very odd !

I’m sorry I’m not buying that and let’s just see how long he sticks around “ dahn our gaff ! “. I’m sure that a2c can explain it all in his or her usual Jabberwocky style.

We now enter the world Robinson’s tippy tappy football. Sadly, a great amount of possession won’t win you games – goals scored is still the key factor. Let’s see if Karl’s changed his ways at all.

If he doesn’t berate referees and blame them for everything that goes wrong then we’ll know he’s changed a bit at least.

Robinson has talked very excitedly about his new job. He’s been acting like a kid in a sweet shop. Therefore, as a number of people have observed, it seems strange that he deferred starting the role until this Monday.

Sheff Utd in the league or MK Dons in the cup………you decide !

I’m not going tomorrow and it won’t be until 17th December that I get see to Robinson’s brave new world.

Good luck to those attending and I hope that you are rewarded with a win like the one in the previous round. 

A plum tie at home in the 3rd round would be good. It would offer a platform to further highlight our current situation.

I know not everyone is studiously following our club but I never cease to be amazed at the number of people who are ignorant of our plight. Mention of Charlton to some folk gets the response of “ How are you doing ? You’re in the Championship arent’ you ? What do you mean about your terrible owner ? “

Clearly plenty still to be educated then !

Come On You Reds !

Monday, 28 November 2016

Happy With A Draw

Sheffield Steel but the Blades lacked a cutting edge.

For pretty much the whole game I’m sure most of us would have settled for a point on Saturday against a strong Blades side that looked fit, quick and inventive.

Clearly we didn’t deserve a share of the spoils but it’s happened to us before so we’ll not concern ourselves too much over that.

Clearly Nugent has the best record of any Charlton interim manager just eclipsing the great Fraeye. That the club didn’t hold on a little longer is a missed opportunity unless Nugent himself really didn’t want the job of course.

I’m pleased to see him remain on the coaching staff although it’s getting a bit crowded there with the imminent arrival of Barker and Roly’s latest stooge CO’L lurking around in the background.

Whilst outplayed for most of the game it is to the team’s credit that they hung on in there to get the draw. One can’t help but feel we would have been a more potent force if Botaka and Chicksen had started or at least one of them.

United’s goal came from a well organised free kick routine that was greatly assisted by our boys deciding to a mannequin challenge on the pitch. Added to this Phillips had one stain on his performance by being beaten so easily at the near post. Better positioning might have prevented the goal but he was cruelly exposed by his team-mates.

That aside Phillips produced a mature and polished performance making several impressive and crucial saves.

It should be noted that the referee was pretty shocking as he let a lot of cynical United fouls go unpunished whereas the slightest infringement from our boys was punished immediately.

Now we have a break from league action as the latest arrival on the Addicks managerial merry-go-round, Karl Robinson climbs aboard.

He has a full week to get his ideas across and decide on his best side. Robinson won’t ever approach a game with more knowledge of the oppo than this one so failure to win won’t be a great start…… pressure !

I can’t see a reason to field anything other than the strongest starting eleven we can with the potential of a prize third round draw in the offing.

Friday, 25 November 2016

Tough Test

This Robinson ( Red Robbo ) didn't have a problem with protests !

The dreaded deed has been done and Karl Robinson is now our manager. For me he is everything our club historically isn’t as evidenced not least by his previous ill-advised comments about our club. However, he’s now chosen to take the Belgian shilling and is now making different noises.

I’ll not comment any further on him at present other than I hope he proves me wrong, acts with some decorum and is a success. At least Adam Chicksen will be pleased with his arrival as he would appear to have a better chance of getting a regular game unless there’s some baggage we’re not aware of.

Saturday sees Nugent’s final game in charge. Far be it from me to point out the inconsistencies of his short tenure against the longevity ( relatively speaking ! ) of the previous interim manager !

If ever we needed a “ wait and see “ approach for a caretaker boss then this was it. I hope he stays on the staff but Robinson will probably bring over Barker but was we know the tail wags the dog so he may not get his way on that should he so wish.

The recent rather disturbing, nay sinister appointment, of CO’L to the football management team ought to be a concern for Robinson. One hopes he has had the sense to clarify his role but since his only managerial experience to date is with one club he is still wet behind the ears in that respect. In addition, he may have taken promises for the owner at face value. One would like to think he’s done at least a little research into him and how things operate in S.E. 7.

The last two performances mean that we go into battle with the Blades in better heart than one would have expected a couple of weeks ago. Injuries and long term ones at that to Solly and Holmes restrict our options. Hopefully Rudd isn’t out for too long although Phillips performed well on Tuesday I believe.

The aforementioned Chicksen deserves his first Valley league start. Botaka ought to start although his 30 minutes last Saturday left a bit to be desired possibly due to lack of game time.

The Blades fans have bought out their entire allocation and will be I good voice no doubt. At least some atmosphere is assured as a result.

This will be a tough test for The Addicks but on present form they seem up to it. A win would be fantastic and we could start looking up the table.

Come On You Reds !

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

5 Go Mad In Bristol !

Well, I’m not sure what’s more unexpected, last night’s scoreline or the imminent appointment of Karl Robinson. However, I know which one pleases me more !

Clearly Mr Nugent is able to get more out of our squad ( bearing in mind the injuries too ) than Slade was. One always felt that our squad ought to be doing better and that to be more attacking was the best option and under his charge the Addicks have shown that to be the case in these last two games.

It was great to see Chicksen start, have a couple of assists and to score a good goal. One wonders why on earth Slade couldn’t have found room for him. After all, he recruited him.

5 different goal scorers is good news and they were all good quality too. Ajose’s strike was superb along with Lookman’s and Josh showed that he can poach goals inside the box. All really good to see.

I’m delighted for all those hardy fans who made the trip to Bristol last night. Well done you ! It’s good to see that loyalty ( and optimism ) rewarded !

After winning two games in four days, scoring 7 goals and conceding one, and that from the spot, you’d hope that our SMT would sit on their hands until after Saturday at least. The Blades will provide a real acid test and not to hold on a little longer would seem foolish. Oh well……….

It seems that we are about to witness Robinson’s appointment as manager then. He was seen at the game last night and apparently spoke to a few supporters. As I would expect ( and the rest will need to get used to – they weren’t words of wisdom if they were reported accurately ).

Living in MK I am well aware of Robinson. If you want an insight into him then speak to some MK Dons fans. Those I’ve spoken to weren’t sad to see him go. Bear in mind he’d taken them to the Champ too.

They’ll tell you he is a whinger of the highest order. Officials come in for the blame following any defeat and he’s far from popular with them – a younger Warnock if you like.

I understand that he wasn’t happy that little money was forthcoming to boost his team following the sale of Deli Ali. That he couldn’t negotiate a better outcome with Pete Winkleman doesn’t bode well for someone who will have to deal with worse than the Dons chairman.

Does he have a good eye for a player ? Well, he signed Simon Church last season as part of the plan to stay in the Champ. He expected him to bring goals and anyone who watch Church play for us will testify that prolific is one thing Church is not.

About two months into last season and Robinson still maintained he just needed a goal and more will follow. They didn’t of course and before the season was up Church was sent out on loan.

Can he motivate players and get the best from them ? Well, he got Poyet on loan from West Ham early last season and failed to get anything from him and Poyet ended up on the bench and then returning to the East End as we all know.

The prospect of him managing our club fills me with dread. I fear he won’t have any appreciation for our history and culture.

If he is manager, I hope he proves me entirely wrong of course. Sadly, I feel he is ill-equipped in nearly every aspect for the challenge that managing our club is under this owner.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Lack Of Atmosphere and Please God No !

Spot the customer !

The Valley was a deserted place on Saturday and had an eerie feel about it and not in a Palace way. As I walked up to the turnstiles there was a distinct lack of both customers and atmosphere. It was like to going to a non-league game.

It didn’t improve once inside the ground where the absence of many fans was even more noticeable. The Red, Red Robin was far from bobbing along too. I’ve been to funerals with a better, more positive vibe.

A reasonable first half saw The Addicks show more attacking intent than usual and a couple of good goals were enough to see us secure the 3 points. The second half was a drab affair and a poor Port Vale side threatened little with their cow’s backside and banjo attempts attempts on goal.

Injuries weren’t sufficient to offer a starting place for Botaka although he did get a full 30 minutes as sub. Obviously he was suffering shock as he put in a rather insipid performance that was a great disappointment to those of us who have been championing his cause.

I understand that if his loan is to be renewed in January it requires the agreement of all 3 parties, i.e. the 2 clubs and himself. It seems unlikely that we’ll see him in 2017 then because I can’t see him wanting to sign up for more bench warming duty. In any case I think he’ll be away on African Nations Cup duty for a while so we might turn our attentions elsewhere.

All that aside it does seem strange to select an ageing Jackson whose best left midfield days are a thing of the past over a younger man whose position is just that.

Fox did well and showed that perhaps he wouldn’t be a bad shout for that left side position although of course that would mean giving Chicksen a start in the league and that would never do !

Post match and the win was greeted with the now customary indifference that anyone who arrived having missed the preceding 90 minutes wouldn’t know if we’d won, lost or drawn !

To think that Roly wants us to enjoy the whole match-day experience. No wonder he’s given up on the live feed ( if he ever did watch it of course ). Franckie et Bennie’s must seem an awful lot more appealing.

Rumour has it that Karl Robinson is now emerging as the favourite to be next on the chopping block. Please God, No ! Whatever the question is he sure ain’t the answer.

The cardigan wearing Robinson is like a well fed Phil Parkinson sans the managerial ability. He’s earned himself a reputation as a whinging b*****d and as a result is about as popular as Colin with referees.
He’s had one job to date under a chairman who failed to dismiss when he should have done last season. Robinson himself should have realised his time was up in the summer and moved on.

We don’t need him and there are many other, better options available. I think Paul Scholes has done most of his badges and if you want a slightly left field appointment then he wouldn’t be a bad shout….if he’d come

Nathan Jones would be ideal but he’s unlikely to want to leave Luton under normal circumstances let alone potentially tarnish his growing reputation at this stage of his career.

In the meantime we’re off to Bristol Rovers tomorrow night where anything other than defeat would be good. A balancing act is needed as we’ll need to field our strongest eleven if we’re to get anything from Saturday against the high-flying Blades.

Friday, 18 November 2016

All The World's A Stage........

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

And all the men and women merely customers;
They have their exits ( save for one Lady MacMeire ) and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts
( businessman, politician, slayer of football clubs ).

But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Katrien is in the Sun,
( Forsooth ! In the sports pages announcing the latest long term appointment, many hours after the news was broken on a piece of parchment nailed to a tree in Floyd Road – twitter ye not ! ).


We want Roland out !
We want Roland out ! 

First Witch.

“ Methinks thou dost protest too much ! “.

We seek him here, we seek him there,
Those Addicks seek him everywhere.
Is he in Leuven ? Is he in Halle ?
That damned, elusive septuagenarian.

Darlings ! I expect to see my fellow thespians in S.E.7 tomorrow !

Come On Thou Reds !

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

The Buck Stops..........

The extent to which Mr Slade was hampered and impeded by the regime is unclear and will probably not be known for some time. I’m sure it can’t have helped in recent weeks to have a network manager sat in the stands.

However, whilst acknowledging all that and the reality of working for these buffoons Slade’s decision making and tactics did result in some of the worst football I’ve seen at The Valley in over 50 years of support.

Lookman on corners, the refusal to ever start league games with Chicksen, Tex, Botaka etc. The ever changing frontline. Playing the wrong players out wide. The list goes on.

Therefore, to a large extent Slade must take some responsibility for his downfall. I acknowledged that he improved a number of things off the pitch and in the general set up. However, as I remarked before these seem to me to be the fairly bog standard way of running things and a minimum expectation.

Mr Slade appears a decent man who early doors struggled to cope with the pressure as evidenced by a couple of testy responses in interviews following poor displays. One recalls his “ it’s not me on the pitch “ response in particular.

Under normal circumstances I can’t believe there’d be too much outcry at his departure. I wish him well and hope that he finds another job soon. One thing’s for sure, he’s likely to find better employers than in his previous two managerial posts.

A wise man ( and fellow blogger ) recently said to me “ be careful what you wish for “ following a bit of a rant about Mr Slade. How right he may prove to be. We’ll have to wait and see as to whether we get a decent replacement or yet another network failure. The early signs don’t look good.

A network manager would only fan the flames further and really cause merry hell.

This latest episode is further evidence as to how bullet-proof our CEO is. Her inability to hire and support the people she appoints is staggering. Anyone with an ounce of personal integrity would have walked long ago. Instead we get the usual spin and she goes into hiding.

Duchatelet clearly won’t fire her despite her overseeing the worst period in the club’s history as she alienates the fans and haemorrhages vast amounts of money.

Given the response to yesterday’s news it would appear that a majority of the media and football experts are finally turning against her and Roly. No amount PR help is going to get you out a mess this big.

One can only hope that the biggest and best result that most of us seek will come to pass sooner as a result. That is, of course, that Roly and Kat sell up and go !