Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Well Earned Point.

Leeds United 1 - Charlton Athletic 1

A point away at Elland Road is more than I expected but it could have been more.

Leeds scored with perhaps their first proper attempt on goal, but only after a heavy push on Cort had been missed by what seems to be our typical official this season.

The BBC London team were tearing strips out of the referee at Half Time and even mild mannered Chris Powell had to be guided away from the optically challenged man in black.

Charlton were by far the better side in the second half.
 Dorian Dervite scored an early equaliser and the team pushed on.

Paddy Kenny kept Leeds in it with some remarkable saves from Solly, Pritchard and BWP.

We'd all have accepted a point but a draw always has a feeling of what might have been? when you finish the game on top and it becomes clear you've been on the receiving end of (another) refereeing howler.

In summary, a pleasing performance, especially after the disappointment at the Valley a few days ago.

Sunday, 21 October 2012

RIP Krasimira Kishisheva

As far as I'm aware, I never met Krasimira Kishisheva.

I met her husband, Radostin Kishishev a few times.
He was never less than charming, as well as being one of my favourite players to wear the Charlton shirt.

I have a signed picture of him on my wall. He was part of one of the 'best' periods for supporting the Addicks.

Unfortunately Radostin lost his wife to cancer this weekend, at the appallingly young age of 38.

My thoughts, (along with I imagine many of the supporters of Leeds, Leicester and Brighton in this country as well as football supporters around the globe), are with Kish and his two young boys.

You Get What You Pay For?

Charlton Athletic 0 - Barnsley 1.

Charlton Athletic as a business made a decision that was essentially found to be a flop yesterday.

The (approx) 11,000 Season Ticket holders were joined by another 15,000 who were keen enough to show up on a cut price ticket, only to be instructed exactly why they're probably better off spending their time elsewhere on a Saturday.

It was a fantastic achievement by the club to fill the ground but as ever, the end product was poor.
I don't imagine many of those 'floating' supporters would have suddenly become die hard Addicks on the strength of yesterdays performance.

Having said all that, I don't give two hoots about the Johnny Come Lately bunch.
They show up for a Fiver every now and again, make the place look busy, then return to their regular Saturdays at Bluewater or Homebase.

I'm more concerned about the rest of us who'll be at the Valley regardless of how the team are performing, or indeed, (shudder), what division.

Barnsley were the better side yesterday.

Had Charlton managed to get anything from the game, it would have been a robbery.
The midfield looked week and there was little spark or enthusiasm about Charlton's play.

The crowd may as well have stayed at home.
Perhaps the watering down of the regulars with the many thousands of day trippers had an effect but even the Upper North were rarely in full voice.

The majority of the noise being made was coming from the visitors section.
They must have been amazed.

"We're playing Charlton.
At the Valley.
They've got their biggest crowd of the season.
Why are they all chewing toffees?"

A dull first half ended with local Olympic hero Gemma Gibbons being interviewed on the pitch.
The poor girl was made to lie through her teeth by proclaiming she had 'enjoyed' the first half.

The second half was more of the same with just a few changes of personnel.
Razak, who I thought had played well, was withdrawn so that Jackson could come into midfield and BWP came on up front instead of Hollands, again in midfield.

The two forwards made us look more like a 'home' team but nothing really changed.

Barnsley scored a peach of a goal.
Green made a fly weight attempt at a challenge and suddenly the ball was in the back of the net.

Charlton never really looked much like scoring, especially when the referee started to break down our attacks.
He became quite infuriating.

I'm not pretending that Charlton weren't fouling as the team certainly were.
What was very annoying was the man in black became eagle eyed when it was a player in red who was making the errant challenge but suddenly resembled Stevie Wonder when the reds were on the receiving end.

Charlton gave away needless free kicks when players were so angry at not getting what they certainly deserved, they then made poor challenges themselves within seconds.

At times, it really did seem as if the ref had a bet on to see how many players he could wind up.
He certainly wound up everyone near me.

It wasn't the officials fault that Charlton were 1-0 down though.
The players have to hold their hands up and claim responsibility for that.
Poor play allied to very little enthusiasm just didn't cut it.

Towards the end of the game, Fuller went off injured and as Pritchard had earlier arrived in place of Green, all 3 subs had already been used.

Oddly, when down to 10 men, Charlton enjoyed their best period of the game.

A goal mouth scramble ended with Barnsley keeping the ball out but many in the ground felt sure the ball had gone extremely close to crossing the line.
It was impossible to tell from my angle but of course the Wishful Thinking attitude had me and everyone around claiming a goal!

What was not open to debate was the way Chris Solly was clattered as he pulled his foot back to shoot on goal.
Stevie Wonder was quite close to the action and very theatrically motioned that the defender had won the ball.
He may well have done but he had to go through Solly to get there, from behind.

We all know it would have been a penalty up the other end and we'd have been cursing our player for making such a ridiculous challenge in the penalty area.

Barnsley got away with one there.

The game ended with a whimper, we all trudged out safe in the knowledge it'll be much easier to get to the toilets and buy a half time drink next time.

Other than lamenting Charlton's dire performance, there was only one talking point after the game.

Depending upon where your seat was, people were either 100% sure 'it was a pen' or said that it certainly looked like one but they'd have to see it again on the highlights to be sure.

Well done BBC Football League Show!
What a useless bunch of (polite editing) Wallys.

Of course, the one incident we all desperately wanted clearing up wasn't even mentioned.


Saturday, 6 October 2012

New Role?

Blackpool 0 - Charlton Athletic 2.

For the first time in a few seasons, Charlton played a game without me either a) being present or b) following the action via commentary on radio or the CAFC player service.

Today, I didn't head up to the North West coast to enjoy the unexpected away victory.
I was at the Lakeside shopping centre over in Essex!

Until I got a text message from Crispy congratulating himself on his betting prowess, (Cort to score), I had no knowledge of events at the Seaside.

A later message announcing Chris Solly had belted one in from outside the penalty area put a little bounce in my step.

Knowing how these things can work out, it was the Final Scores on the radio while exiting the car park that made me finally relax and do that ridiculous fist pump we all do.

I had been to our two previous games at Bloomfield Road and left there cold, wet and disappointed on both occasions.
It didn't seem much of a hardship to stay at home instead of doing a long schlep North, for what seemed like a pretty obvious home win.

Well done to Chris Powell, the players and back up squad for winning a game not many people would have predicted..

I received a few messages this evening with a common theme, that being I need to stay away from Charlton games more often!

I don't really fancy that role very much.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012


Charlton Athletic 1 - Watford 2

Just home.

Walked past all the gloating 'fake London' Watford fans with their cheery faces and bright eyes.

In all honesty, tonight would have been the very best type of away victory for them.

Winning away, with just 10 men, is the kind of game you remember at the end of the season as one of your highlights.

The fact that Watford were battered for the majority of the game wouldn't matter one jot.

The scoreline is everything in these situations.

Charlton started strongly and it came as quite a shock to go 1- 0 down.

A rather unnecessary corner was given away and while Charlton supporters were moaning about the kick being taken from outside the arc, it was whipped in and a combination of wayward marking and flukey rebounds ended up with the ball in Ben Hamer's net.

Hoban was credited with the final touch.


Charlton came back and carried on as before, sending mostly one way traffic towards the Watford goal.

The expected equaliser finally came when Fuller ran onto a slide rule pass and tucked the ball away.
He never really looked like missing.

Just before Half Time there was the critical moment in the game.

Forestieri made the most appalling attempt at winning a penalty.
 His dive was so blatant it gave referee Mike Dean no choice but to issue a yellow card.
I'd forgotten he'd already received one for not retreating 10 yards at a free kick so it was an early bath for him.

This gave the Watford supporters a feeling of persecution.
They couldn't see how justified the decision was from their end and booed the officials.

In the second half, it was one way traffic again.
Watford barely got a sniff of a chance.

Referee Dean probably felt his dismissal of the Watford Tom Daley was enough for Charlton and gave us absolutely nothing throughout the second half.

The winning goal, when it came, was an absolute peach.

Watford were never going to score from open play.
Luckily for them they didn't need to.

Leon Cort gave away a foul and one of those 'wonder goal' free kicks was curled around the wall, leaving Hamer stranded.

Oddly, a few moments later, exactly the same kind of challenge occurred up at the other end, inside the penalty area this time, yet Mike Dean just waved play on.
The Charlton players were incensed.

We hear plenty about consistency with decisions.
This was yet another time when things just didn't fall for us this season.

Every single attack Charlton made, (and there were many), was blocked in the Italian fashion by holding down the forward and pushing the runner.
Very skilful when done well, which often it was -but there were also many times when it was just an assault.

BWP was put through on goal and he had 3 defenders tugging and pulling at him.
He did really well to stay on his feet but being pulled back so sharply meant his eventual shot went high and wide.
It looked the most obvious free kick in the world.

Yet it wasn't given.

 I was hugging my knees with the score at 1-1 due to the missed chances.
Surely we couldn't be so far and away the better side yet have to settle for a draw?

As it turned out, it was worse than that.

Fair play to Watford.
They had so few forays on goal, yet scored 2.

Charlton played well for most of the game but just needed that tiny little bit of luck to get what was deserved.

We can all criticise the referee but despite his odd decisions, especially in the last 20 minutes, it was down to our players to get the ball into the net.

Which they failed to do.

Sometimes football is a real sickener isn't it?