Monday, 20 November 2017

Happier Valley

The Daily Mail notes the absence of protests at The Valley, but points out this does not mean that fans are reconciled with Roland. They still want him to go and if a 'for sale' sign can be hung outside the ground at Blackpool, why not at Charlton: Happier Valley

Saturday's Voice of the Valley covered the completion of the due diligence process and the more than thirty issues it has thrown up, including complex technical ones such as sub-leases which will not be resolved quickly.

Rick Everitt has tweeted that it is time that the national media did some work on the real story and forced Charlton to make a statement.

Forster-Caskey sees the positives

Jake Forster-Caskey reckons that if Charlton continue to play the way they did against MK Dons on Saturday they will secure many more victories. He points out that the Addicks have now gone eight games unbeaten: Banking wins

He says that he was close to the penalty incident and no way was it a penalty.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

'We were robbed'

That was the conclusion of Steve from Petts Wood after today's 2-2 draw with MK Dons at The Valley today and his comment echoed the feelings of many Charlton fans. However, whom we were robbed by? An incompetent referee or our own failure to take our chances when we were ahead in the first half and we were dominating the game.

At that stage we were playing some very good football with precision passing and good insight into where space might open up. Six minutes in Josh Magnennis put us 1-0 ahead with a precision header from a Forster-Caskey corner. A deflected curling effort from Forster-Caskey came off the post. We could have put the game to bed because I think that MK Dons would have caved in if they had gone 2-0 behind.

As it was, they got back into the game(although they didn't have a real shot on goal until 36 minutes) helped by the fact that many of their very physical challenges were overlooked or dealt with very leniently by the folically challenged referee, not least when Ricky Holmes was wrestled to the ground by their charming No.7. In the second half he started to give out a blizzard of yellow cards to both sides indiscriminately, having lost control of the game.

We were still 1-0 ahead at the break, but the visitors equalised. After that we were less in control of the game. Ben Reeves going off after taking a knock didn't help. A great run by Kashi put us 2-1 ahead in the 87th minute by creating an own goal from a Fosu cross, but then the linesman flagged for a penalty after a dramatic drive by Peter Pawlett.

Early in the second half Mark Marshall should have doubled the lead but was stopped by Nicholls when through on goal. But after 63 minutes substitute Agard levelled, heading in at the far post from a Scott Golbourne cross. Moments later MK Dons striker Chuks Aneke went through on goal but fired wide.

An injury time opportunity was wasted after a poor ball in by Ahearne-Grant.

A lot of credit goes to Josh Magennis for his tireless efforts, always chasing down the ball. Naby Sarr had a good game at the back. Ricky Holmes should not try and do it all himself, but should pass the ball.

But at the end of the day Charlton have fallen back from 3rd to 5th. The Northamptonshire referee meanwhile got his lift back to Milton Keynes on the Dons team coach from where his wife could pick him up. (Given some misunderstandings, I need to clarify that this was a joke. But he might as well have done given his performance. I don't think referees should be chosen from locations near one of the teams playing).

Karl Robinson said after the game that he would be kicking his cat in frustration if he had one (as the Football League Paper put it this morning, 'The cat's not got Karl's tongue'): Frustration

Football League Paper rankings

Amos, 6; Solly, 6; Konsa, 6; Saar, 7; DaSilva, 7; Marshall, 7; Kashi, 5; Forster-Caskey, 8; Holmes, 9; Magennis, 8; Reeves, 6 (Fosu, 6).

Friday, 17 November 2017

The franchisees are in town

Charlton face MK Dons at The Valley today. I must make sure the train I get from Coventry does not stop at Milton Keynes.

The Franchisees are currently 14th in the table but fourth from bottom in the form table. They have actually won three of their eight games away, as many as they have won at home where they have been something of draw specialists.

Four Four Two forecast a 8th place finish at the beginning of the season while their fan commentator saw them in the play off places at 5th. Former Hearts boss Robbie Nelson is in charge.

24-year old 'swashbuckling' ex Arsenal youngster Chuks Aneke was highlighted as 'key player' at the start of the season. In last Saturday's 1-0 win over Fleetwood both managers admitted that he was the difference between the two sides as his goal gave MK Dons their first league win since the beginning of September. Robbie Nelson said, 'Chuks Aneke is a top player. He has been doing a lot of work in training and staying behind after'.

We have won three of our four league games against MK Dons at this level, one by 5-1 in 2009-10, but we lost last year's encounter 0-2. (Karl Robinson's first game at The Valley as manager was a 0-0 draw with them in the FA Cup). As the CAS Trust preview notes, 'On 4th April this year came one of the most depressing performances of the last few years when MK won 2-0 at The Valley. It seemed almost as if the emotion and pageantry of the PC Palmer memorial tributes had drained the life out of the Charlton players. Now we host them again at a time when optimism around the club is probably at its highest since the start of the Bob Peeters season.'

Richard Cawley interviews 'man of the moment' Tariqe Fosu: Point to prove

A new edition of the Voice of the Valley will be on sale around the ground before the game. If you want to enjoy the thoughts of the vinegar pissers in the comfort and privacy of your own home, you can order a copy online: Deathless prose

Charlton talking to Best

Charlton are talking to trialist Leon Best about his future. Although Karl Robinson has said that the content of the talks will be kept 'internal', he admits that 'we like what we see': Transfer talks

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Big price range at Charlton

The latest BBC Price of Football study shows that Charlton have both the second cheapest (Bradford City have the cheapest at £149) and the most expensive season ticket in League One at £175 and £500 respectively.

They also have the most expensive single ticket at £34. Full report here: Data for all leagues

Whether that represents a smart pricing strategy or incompetence is a matter of opinion.

The myth of Alan Curbishley and Charlton fans

There is a persistent myth that Charlton fans wanted to get rid of Alan Curbishley and replace him by someone who would take us 'to the next level', the implication being that we were a bunch of idiots with excessive expectations who didn't know when we were well off. Here is the latest airing of this myth: Ridiculous expectations

As Dave Lockwood has pointed out on Twitter, only a tiny minority of fans ever held this view. What most of us wanted was for him to be given the financial backing subsequently provided to Iain Dowie who promptly wasted it.