Saturday, 30 January 2016

Rotherham United 1 v Charlton Athletic 4

Not many saw this scoreline coming. If you were told that the match would finish 4-1 you would have to assume we were on the wrong end once again. I didn't follow the match as I was trying to sort the kids Nintendo out. There was a decent stream on the internet by all accounts and for once our fans had something to cheer.

The two large black and white CARD banners were on show and we can get used to seeing them at away matches in future, even if The Regime will act to have them removed if they appear in the stadium at The Valley.

Today wasn't about protests though, it was about hope. Hope that our players can claw their way out of the bottom three and prevent a disastrous relegation. Last week didn't look any better to me than recent weeks but with another week under his belt, Jose Riga appears to have got through to his players. Gudmundsson wanted to know and Cousins was playing through balls once again. Vetokele looks like he may be approaching his peak fitness again and with that extra yard of pace, he could be netting again regularly - he managed one today. 

Simon Makienok isn't good enough to lead the line for a successful Championship side but he scored twice today and can make a case to be good enough for the bottom end of the division. Then we have Ademola Lookman. A slip of a lad who returned from injury in the last few minutes of play today and scored again. The only question with Ademola is, can we hang on to him post January?

Our defence was still shaky today and Rotherham missed a penalty at 1-3 which could have changed the game. 'Tex' appears to have made an instant difference at the back and with Bauer on the way back from surgery we can hope to tighten up a bit.

We are still very weak in central midfield and Johnny Jackson may get away with it against sides like Rotherham but his pace gets exposed ruthlessly against better sides. If we can bring in a midfield general I would have much more confidence we can stay up. Without it, I do fear we are still too vulnerable. We shouldn't forget that Rotherham are one of the poorest teams and look certain to be returning to League One for next season. We did beat them today, so let's enjoy that winning feeling again - it's been a long time.

Friday, 29 January 2016

Fans Forum embarrassment

Yet another PR own goal. The new Comms Miracle Worker is really going to have his or her work cut out. There's another cringeworthy denial video available but spare yourself and do something productive instead. When will they learn? Stop fucking digging, the hole is already big enough to bury all of you.

To save you the effort, it was an exercise in bombast and bullying with weight of numbers from the shit-scared staff. The actual Fans should follow Fanny's example and throw the towel in. Don't afford them the opportunity to insult our intelligence.

Let's redouble our efforts for the next home protest. Let's face it, that's all we have left this season.

Finally, unsurprising results from the CAST survey. They are predicting a tsunami of season ticket refuseniks. Au revoir Katrien....

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Balancing-the-books trumps staying-up

More proof today, if any were needed, that Roland Duchatelet's strict financial targets come before safe-guarding the status of our club. In a move of striking similarity to that of the sale of Yann Kermorgant two years ago, our most creative and still highest scoring player this season has been moved on when we are heading for League One and crying out for goals. Sorry but it's blindingly obvious and so, therefore, is their rationale.

Tony Watt made a surprise return to the starting eleven on Saturday against Blackburn Rovers and was our best player but he's moved on loan to them today. His return was only a surprise given our intention to cash-in by selling him to Cardiff fell through because of an unfortunate transfer embargo.

I have been saying it for ages and some still can't comprehend it - Roland Duchatelet isn't overly concerned if we go down. Yes, he will lose revenue but his costs will fall in proportion. With both of those numbers dropping he will simply need a smaller gap filling each year from player sales to turn a profit. It really is that simple. It's a low risk strategy that should mean he can make a profit on his investment in the years to come. They will already have calculated that our chances of being more competitive in a League One are much better than the Championship where you have to invest to stand still. If we can win the majority of home games they will be satisfied that they can stop the gate falling a lot further. Competitive in League One with ambitions for the Championship.

Schemes like letting unused office space to the NHS, moving ticketing all on-line, possibly doing away with programmes and looking to redevelop the Jimmy Seed to accommodate flats will allow him to develop new revenues whilst continuing to trim the footballing budget.

Still room for more protestors...

Sunday, 24 January 2016

The parody of Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang

It has been troubling me for some time but it's finally come to me. I have had a feeling of deja vu over Roland Duchatelet's takeover and running of Charlton Athletic. It was dear Katrien that finally helped me crack it. There was something about her appearance and her behaviour I was already familiar with. Something deep in my psyche. Something from my formative years. Something that had frightened me as a child and stayed with me deep-down.

It was her ever-lengthening nose that did it. The most recent fibs and contradictions to the national press finally revealed it. The Child Catcher of my nightmeires.

But why was it such a strong feeling? Of course, Baron Bomburst, hidden away in his European Chateau, none other than Roland Duchatelet.

Who then would have played the hapless Brit they captured? Grandpa Potts, our own Richard "We need to improve the communication" Murray of course!

Charlton Athletic 1 v Blackburn Rovers 1

Progress in relative terms but another relegation result. Jordan Rhodes was always going to score so it was clear we were going to need at least two to win.

In front of a Valley crowd again, Jose Riga dispensed with both Roger Johnson and Rhys Williams after last week's horror show. Jorge Texeira made his debut alongside Harry Lennon and they were solid enough with Solly and Fox tucked in. Our problem yesterday was in midfield where we again made the mistake if pairing Jackson and Cousins. Jacko simply doesn't have the pace and Cousins goes missing when paired with him. The problem was compounded by a disinterested Gudmundsson and a patchy performance from Bergdich. It was no surprise then that supply to Vetokele and Watt was sporadic and why Watt was forced to come looking for it and again being left with too much to do.

A very average match with little really to report other than Watt's determination, Lennon's deflected opener and Rhodes' header equaliser on the stroke of half-time which went in off the post and the unfortunate Stephen Henderson. Henderson did pull off a decent second-half stop to deny Rhodes a brace, which earned him an appreciative pat on the back from the Scot. We also had the sad spectacle of a smallish banner being removed from the hoardings on the North Upper which looked clumsy and ham-fisted as the lad and his mother were thrown out. The offending bed sheet simply said "We want our club back." No doubt the club will cite some nebulous advertisement infringement but it was petty and predictably Meiresque. The Club are treading a fine line here and will be putting their Stewards in a difficult position if they continue to behave like this because all it will take is an exchange of punches to draw the angry participation of many others.

I felt our changes could have been made five to ten minutes earlier and it was disappointing to see Igor go off. Nothing changed visibly with Harriott and Goochannejhad on.

So, onto the protest then and a very healthy percentage of the home gate poured around behind the West to vent their spleen. I would suggest between 3-4000, so getting on for maybe 40% of those attending the game. We were also treated to Rick Everitt on an under-powered megaphone as well as a couple of red smoke bombs and the usual songs sang at a higher volume than before. At Midday social media requests urged fans to not to spend money on programmes or Regime food and drink. I was sceptical about how effective this would be but it looked fairly effective in the East and as a yardstick, The Regime will have felt the effect in their daily takings.

If Rotherham beat us at their place next week we will go a minimum of five points behind and possibly as many as seven. With Bolton having beaten MK Dons yesterday, they have moved within a point so we have a stronger prospect of going bottom than getting out of the relegation places. This is what relegation seasons feel like and how they unfold.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Flash Protest at the Valley

At 5pm on Saturday at the Valley, several thousand loyal Charlton Athletic fans will gather behind the West Stand once more to protest at the amateur mismanagement which is ruining the support base and taking us into the third tier of English football. At Midday on Saturday, the Coalition Against Roland Duchatelet will announce further details of it's intended protests for the day. You can pick these up on Twitter at @CharltonCARD or via Facebook at facebook/CharltonCARD and they will be well publicised around the ground.

If you care about the future of Charlton Athletic, please make every effort to join the protest and ram home the message that we will continue until they have been shamed out of SE7. These people are slowly and systematically degrading our club. What has become very clear during two years of ongoing chaos on and off the field, is that Roland Duchatelet has zero intention of using any of his £600m fortune to strengthen or grow our club. In fact, his aim is simply to develop young players for sale and profit. He will ensure there are spaces for them to play in the first team by under-investing in more experienced players in order to get them in the shop window eg Joe Gomez and Ademola Lookman. What this means in practice is that we will be uncompetitive and will struggle. Duchatelet doesn't care about the first team - why else would we have had six managers since he took over? He isn't interested in gambling big money for big riches, he will be content to turn a profit and if that means we are in League One or League Two, so be it. Very simply, his running costs in those leagues will be less and we might be more competitive with a poorer squad. That also explains why he doesn't care about what the supporters think or what they want to see. It's why he persists with a Chief Executive who is so out-of-her-depth (like his managerial appointments and many of his imported players) that she has managed to alienate practically every supporter we have. That really takes some doing but she has managed it. She is now so unpopular that she cannot travel safely to matches any more and has, in effect, gone into hiding.

Be there on Saturday. Support the team but not the regime.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Third centre-half in the window

Twenty-nine year old Jorge Teixeira has signed on an unlikely three-and-a-half year deal from Standard Liege. Following swiftly in the footsteps of 'Relegation' Roger and 'Two Games' Rhys, it looks like early acknowledgement that perhaps Johnson and Williams weren't exactly the best bets to shore up our defence.

Jorge has been around - nine clubs in ten years - so don't bet on him seeing his contract out beyond next season. It's interesting that the deal has been done with Standard. Clearly he is known to Jose and Duchebag but I am slightly surprised Roland is shopping at Standard again, given the recent hoo-hah over the Watt deal and the threatened legal action. No mention of a fee but I suspect this will be a more costly undisclosed fee than some of the others.

The proof of the pudding is yet to be tested but this looks more like the sort of signing we should be making rather than older journeymen, although I guess Johnson and Williams ticked the 'Championship-experienced' box. Perhaps Pune City and Middlesbrough Reserves wasn't the best most recent experience before joining the sinking ship that is Charlton Athletic.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Katrien Meire to be relieved of her duties - [Reissued]

[This post is being reissued as Katrien Meire has paid to have negative articles about her largely cleansed from search engines - no-one should be able to control free information]

Following yesterday's gubbing and the anticipated demonstration at Saturday's home defeat against Blackburn Rovers, I am expecting Roland to make his second statement within a week. Katrien Meire's position as Chief Exec has become untenable and she has overstayed her unwelcome in the same way Karel Fraye did with similar results.

She has gone to ground in recent weeks and hasn't been seen anywhere as far as I can ascertain. Certainly not at matches and she has been anonymous in the sacking of Fraye and re-appointment of Riga. She was rumoured to have met Riga in a central London hotel but that suggests she's still in hiding.

In the same way that Fraye lost the dressing room and alienated every single supporter, she has lost the stadium and there can be no-one left who would entertain any form of her redemption. Her lying, spin and in-built arrogance have proven too much and all credibility has gone. Whilst she remains in charge, prospects for season ticket renewals will be abysmal and even she must recognise that she needs to fall on her sword, if not have it wielded by Duchebag. 

Indeed, the Coalition Against Roland Duchatelet (CARD) will now ratchet up the pressure on the hapless owner and he has to sacrifice his prodigy if he wants to have any chance of holding on to the club. If he remains defiant on this he will do so in the knowledge he will haemorrhage cash running Charlton Athletic and, I suspect, it would only be because he is actively lining up a sale and wants to withdraw with Katrien in the same move. The smart money has to be on her being given a face-saving role elsewhere in the network, although her fall from grace would be complete and hugely cheered in SE7 circles.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Hull City 6 v Charlton Athletic Nil

Not really sure what to say here. I have been at St. Thomas' Hospital with my Mum all afternoon and have just tuned in to see the result and grab the headlines. 

I honestly thought basic pride and determination would ensure we kept the scoreline fairly respectable today, but obviously not. The players were so embarrassed by Tuesday's 5-0 defeat that they spoke about clubbing together to refund the band of optimists who hand made the journey. Hard to see why they won't feel similarly obliged after today's humping, although I suspect they don't want to be making a habit of this given how hopeless they are. Poor old Stephen Henderson has conceded 13 goals in eight days. The poor sod could barely talk on Tuesday after the thumping at Huddersfield. His confidence must be shot to pieces.

Obviously too soon to be laying this at Riga's door but that's an alarming way for the squad to respond to news of a new manager. Having said that, perhaps they are immune to manager-change now? Who can blame them as they last about four months with these clowns in charge.

The Regime (Duchatelet, Meire and Murray) have embarrassed this club and are leading us into the third division of English football. Our squad was under-invested at the start of the season and they have strengthened in the Pound Shop during January, whilst at the same time lining up the £2m sale of our best attacking player and that of our brightest young talent. Make no mistake, this is the Duchatelet strategy writ-large. Everything else you have heard is utter spin and that Witch Meire has peddled most of it with a breath-taking arrogance.

Richard Murray, hang your head in shame. You were defending your co-conspirators last week, suggesting the signing of past-it 'Relegation' Roger and 'Two Games' Willliams would enable us to turn things around. Well Richard, they did a lot of turning around today. The pair of them will probably still be spinning in the coach back home.

What I do know, is that Roland Duchatelet will be shelling out for a lot more security men this week because things could get very tasty on Saturday when Blackburn visit. He won't be there of course because he doesn't actually support us and isn't interested. His Chief Executive has been hiding low and my honest suggestion is that the Red Rag stays away from the Bull on Saturday.

Friday, 15 January 2016

Another bad day for Meire - [Reissued]

[This post is being reissued as Katrien Meire has paid to have negative articles about her largely cleansed from search engines - no-one should be able to control free information]

Katrien's book-balancing plans were potentially wrecked today when Cardiff City had a transfer embargo placed on them for this transfer window. That explains why the Tony Watt deal hadn't completed already and it leaves Katrien with a potential (undisclosed) £2m gap in her plan. She might want to stay under her stone for a few more days.

I wouldn't jump to any conclusions about Watt returning to help the relegation battle. She can still look to sell him elsewhere and an extended loan deal with Cardiff might also be possible. It does, of course, make the sale of Ademola Lookman appear far more likely, if that isn't already firmly on the cards.

Jose Riga may also see an end to any hopes of additional reinforcements. You have to wonder just what else can go wrong this season and how much more of a disaster Katrien Meire has to preside over before she gets the sack?

Personally, I would love see Watt return as he is the best attacking threat we have and there is zero prospect of us bringing in anyone of his calibre. Not holding my breath.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Campaign Against Roland Duchatelet (C A R D)

I couldn't make it last night but I am fully supportive.......


Campaigning Charlton fans came together on Tuesday night to formulate plans to step up protests aimed at forcing the owner Roland Duchatelet to put the club up for sale.

Supporters from Anti Roland Demos, Spell It Out and Voice of The Valley, who have all organised protests at recent matches, were joined by representatives of the Charlton Life message board and the Charlton Fans Protest Fund, as well as others.

They agreed to work together under the banner of CARD (Coalition Against Roland Duchatelet) and to follow up recent demonstrations against the owner with another major post-match rally in the west stand car park immediately following the Blackburn Rovers home game on January 23rd.

However, recognising that further and less predictable initiatives are also required, additional action will also be disclosed on the day of the Blackburn game itself.

This will not involve a pre-match demonstration in the car park, but plans are being kept flexible in order to be able to respond to developments, including around the managerial situation.

An immediate objective for the group, which is working on a series of short and medium-term actions to impact on the club, is to force significant changes in its senior management.

The meeting was also attended by observers from the board of the Charlton Athletic Supporters’ Trust. All present played a full part in discussions at a very productive and consensual meeting.

At this stage, CARD simply wants to assure Charlton fans that we are working together to try to bring a swift and positive end to the current crisis at the club.

The global search has begun again

Finally we get official word that Karel Fraye has been relieved of his senses duties. Only a month or two late but Roland was desperate for Fraye to justify his ludicrously unqualified appointment, so Katrien was ordered to stick with him when it was obvious to anyone who has seen what's happened under him that it was only going to get worse. The short, five sentence statement, thanks Fraye for his "tireless work" and "many positive contributions." Probably too much to expect any honesty from The Liar.

You would think they might have focused on this last ten games in charge maybe, you know, L, L, D, D, L, D, L, D, L, L. Hard to spin this as a successful appointment however deluded you might be. I reckon even Old Katrien might jump on the Bandwagon here and condemn poor old Carol once she comes out of hiding. You might also expect them to have lined-up a replacement given our dire straits and the gentle signals they have been getting that Fraye wasn't the new Jose. Indeed, Jose hasn't even turned out to be the new Jose, unless there is another twist in that story. 

Instead, backroom Flemish-speaker, Wim de Corte has been given the poisoned "Interim" challice of picking a side for Hull on Saturday. Good luck there Wim. Personally I think you will do well to get three players to talk to each other this week, let alone you. I also reckon you could be in luck. Chances are, the players are so embarrassed by their pitiful showing at Huddersfield that they will raise their game a tad and you can cut the deficit to the 'standard' three.

In the meantime, Katrien Meire begins another global search for the next Flemish-speaking fall-guy to follow in the footsteps of Jose, Bob, Guy, Karel and Wim (perhaps she's missed her vocation in Recruitment and Head-Hunting - she's certainly well-experienced in picking winners now?). That's not to say of course that Wim, himself, could actually be crowned King if he can add a W to Karel's appalling record of late - perhaps he can convince her his name is Win de Corte? 

There is also talk of Roland actually having to speak English when giving his orders and appointment of a suitably experienced professional, but the smart money is still on one of the other Network stars being over-promoted to follow in the fine Roland Duchatelet tradition of "not doing failure" Ha, ha, ha-ha, ha-ha, ha! The Dennis-Wise look-a-like at Upjest has been listed although so have all the other network nonentities anyone can find on the internet because the odds shorten on them all as the days go by.

Yes, Katrien probably has a full day of interviews planned tomorrow and again on Friday. Probably get through 60 candidates if she clears her diary and skips lunch before she has to tell her next big whopper. Do you think she practices in a mirror before opening her Belgian bun-hole or does she think she has the lying smirk down to a fine enough art to try it again? If the PR guy had started sooner he might tell her to stay hidden so her body language doesn't give the game away. At least another short statement would minimise scope for yet more ridicule and Pinocchio jokes.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Huddersfield Town 5 v Charlton Athletic Nil

Dear oh dear. Amid rumblings that Jose Riga may have stuck two fingers up at the prospect of another few months at The Valley (he will go up enormously in my estimation if he has turned Duchebag down), the hapless Karel Fraye got yet another chance to motivate his charges and show us his tactical genius. No surprise then that we took our biggest tonking so far in a season of hammerings.

Katrien Meire, hang your smirking head in shame. What an absolute fucking mess. Resign now before things get out-of-hand.

Roland Duchatelet, surely you can see what a complete shambles you and your flawed strategy are making of our historic and once-proud club. Cut your losses and sell to the first credible bidder. Do yourself a favour and remain in hiding on your side of the Channel.

There can be no more excuses. Fraye must be sacked now even without a replacement manager. He risks assault if he appears on the touchline again.

Richard Murray, what were you mumbling about confidence and believing our results would improve? You need to resign before your health is affected. Your reputation is already ruined.

Monday, 11 January 2016

Adieu Mr. Bean

Adieu Karel Fraye. You dressed your best but, sadly, you were hopelessly unqualified for managing Charlton Athletic Football Club and the players gave up on you weeks ago, not long after the fans. Don't be too down-hearted though, there are other network jobs which might be more suited to your talents.

So, Jose Riga is shortly to return to try once more to throw a double-six. Callum Harriott will be pleased. Personally, Riga isn't the worst appointment they could make by a long shot. He was successful in his last stint and did not deserve to be sacked pre-season to make way for Big Bob Peeters. He was, understandably, a little bitter about that but Roly only has a few Flemish-speaking managers on his books, so he did get another brief stint at Standard Liege following his equally short spell at Blackpool. Come to think about it, he didn't get long at Metz either. What's the betting he doesn't make six months this time around? I have to ask, too, what level of self-respect does Jose have, having already been sacked a couple of times by Duchebag only to return once more? Maybe it's a Belgian thing? 

I would have preferred to get a bog-standard British manager with experience of the Championship but Jose perhaps represents less risk at this time. Given the lack of a gamble on the playing front in the January window, his appointment is, at least, in keeping with that. When we do go down, we can at least reflect on the fact that we haven't piled further debt upon our shoulders unnecessarily. Sorry Katrien, I didn't really mean 'our' shoulders, I am aware that it's The Shareholder who will burden that responsibility until he sells us on. 

So, good luck Jose, I will support you all the way from here but I think you are going over the top armed with a knife and fork. 

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Colchester United 2 v Charlton Athletic 1

I made a big decision to attend today's match, primarily driven by a desire to meet up with the rest of the gang with whom I followed this club home and away for twenty years. Ten of us went along with my Step-brother's 14 year-old boy and we had the laugh I remember so fondly before the game and briefly afterwards. Thanks chaps, always an honour.

We met at Stratford before 11am and were in the Essex Pub of the Year not long after Midday. We drained the Framer's IPA and then the Brass Monkey in The Victoria. In true tradition we left transport until all the cabs in town were busy so had a 15 minute search for the bus which got us in within a minute of kick-off. We managed to hold out until about 4.20 before we gave in and got taxi's back to the Bricklayer's Arms. Ben and I left the lads and headed home early.

New low for me in footballing terms today. Karel Fraye was mocked throughout the match and it is as clear as Pinocchio's nose that he is embarrassingly out-of-his-depth. If he is still in post come Monday, then there is zero hope for us this season and even the most optimistic Customer will have to concede that we must have regime change.

Personally, I am ready for action and civil disobediance.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Murray the apologist

Well I suppose someone had to say something and it's fallen to Richard Murray.

Poor Richard has taken a bit of a battering from supporters of late and his legacy as a Charlton legend is in serious danger of being re-written. They say that history is written by the victors and if that holds true I am afraid Murray will be remembered more for his disastrous association and defence of Duchatelet and Meire than for his Chairmanship which saw our halcyon days of the Premiership.

Unfortunately his latest tame Q and A does nothing more than play the harp and trot out the previous lines  albeit with one or two rye observations. For example, I note that the much-trumpeted strategy  ("which I thought we'd done before, but anyhow....") now has an added emphasis. "Financially stable" is now the first part and the competitive bit in the Championship is added with the pipe-dream for the PL. As for the rest of it, maybe easier just to include one of those key word themes which are all the rage now....

Financially stable. A bigger challenge. Difficult and interesting times. One of the most difficult leagues. Not everyone can win. Danger of Administration. Triple figure debts. Keeping a handle on outgoings. Hopefully..overseas players will be better next season. Can't legislate for injuries. A problem in December, in particular. Probably falling just a bit short. The obvious missing strand....We have acted quickly. Hoping the players are good enough (Relegation Roger and Old Williams). There are some supporters who don't like the ownership. 40% increase in the player budget. Affordable ticket prices. Our owner subsides the club. A little bit of good fortune.

No mention of the amateur Chief Exec, the ongoing fibs, the haughty arrogance, the under-investment in the squad, the inadequate coaching appointments, the 2%, the growing protests, the absent thousands, the loss of die-hard supporters, the confusion of loyal football fans with restaurant customers, the blanking of Peter Varney etc.

Richard, we are going down. Wake up and smell the coffee. The three clubs with the smallest budgets last year went down and we are there this year on merit as we balance the books. If Roland has increased the playing budget by 40%, Meire should be sacked for that alone. Frankly, I don't believe that and neither will the players. Financial stability is admirable but you can do that much easier in the lower leagues and that's where we are headed. The overseas duffers won't be any better next season - we have binned most of last season's non-entities this season and this season's will be headed out sooner rather than later. Tony Watt has been the pick of the crop but you've flogged him. It's not all just gone wrong in December although it's probably just a coincidence that it's when the latest overseas coaching success has got to grips with the job. Affordable ticketing is admirable but we aren't offering value even for that as things stand and many won't be back next season even if it's free. Don't get me started on the Academy - it makes us a proper Feeder Club under Duchatelet. Lookman to Palace anyone?

The damage being done to this club could barely be worse and much of it is irreparable. You can hope for the best but the strategy we are pursuing is not working and the person executing it has lost the confidence of your Customers and needs to be replaced. It wouldn't be tolerated at a restaurant, let alone a football club. Relegation will see our club take a massive step backwards but I believe that won't bother the Shareholder anything like the rest of us because it will help cut his exposure and allow him to be more competitive in a league he is willing to afford. That and the fact that he isn't really a fan and doesn't watch us play.

Sorry Richard, you have backed the wrong horse here. Roland will lose money but you will lose your reputation. I have been a huge fan of yours but it's all headed south I'm afraid and you either can't see it or are hoping for a miracle.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Too little, too late.

True to form, reinforcements are arriving as we bid to avoid relegation for the third year in succession. The good news, is that Roger Johnson and Diego Poyet know the club and will be familiar with some of the existing squad. Rhys Williams doesn't, but he has bags of experience and should bring some focus and perhaps some much-needed leadership. 

There is news of a possible move for Yann Kermogant but I can't see it. There's too much water under the bridge on Yann and it would be seen as an acknowledgement that selling him on arrival was a large error of judgement by The Shareholder. We know now that the Belgians are deluded and lack humility.

There may be one or two more in similar vein and my guess is one at least will be sold to pay for the incoming wages. All-in-all, nowhere near enough and we won't even nudge the odds up from our current 1-4 on relegation let alone climb away from the zone. If we are to avoid relegation, we will need a return to action, fitness and form of most of those lingering in the Sick Bay.

The other glaringly obvious thing is that we appear short of the personnel to actually identify, negotiate and recruit anyone worth their salt. La Meire looks like she's doing most of it, which perhaps explains why we are back with Relegation Roger, Unwanted Poyet and Old Williams. I would be inclined to say none of them have a future at this club for various reasons, although Roger has managed to nick himself an 18 month contract so it looks like Katrien is banking on his experience in the heart of defence to lead us through our first season back in League One. Badly-dressed man (he has been living in India) must have loved the negotiation with Katrien having been dumped by the club in the Summer. Good luck to him.

I will refer to this post at numerous points between now and May, particularly when La Meire attempts to lay the blame at someone else's door, as she is bound to do.

A Weirdo's view of Nightmeire & Duchebag

Sometimes, pictures are better than words...Click Here

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Charlton Athletic 1 v Nottingham Forest 1

Dave was otherwise indisposed so you have me for today's match report.Such is my ambivalence towards our club at the moment, that I haven't bothered making the 150 mile round trip to a game in almost a month. Today I felt different and wanted to attend not so much for the football but more to show my support for the cause and to protest against those that would apparently seek to strip Charlton Athletic of it's dignity, it's heritage and history, it's fanbase, it's playing squad and all else we hold dear with regard to this great club.

I didn't make the first protest, the M23 and M25 saw to that, but having parked the car and walking close to the ground the noise from behind the West Stand was easily heard and promised much for Part 2.

To the game then, I accompanied Mrs Peeps to the ground, she's far more knowledgeable than me on football matters so I'll leave her to report to Dave on tactics and the subtleties of the game, but I did notice early on that the newly shorn Makienok was alone up top with Jacko in "the hole". Sadly, I think that may be the hole where his talent may now be buried because he has lost it I'm afraid and he contributed nothing as far as I could see apart from colliding with Makienok in the six yard box when presented with one of the few chances in the first half.

It was good to see Harriot back and although I've never been a great fan due to his inconsistency, he was my man of the match today, running after everything, getting down the wing and providing the assist for Big Mak's goal. Harriot played right midfield first half, with Vaz Te left and Cousins and El Hadji Ba centre. Back four of Solly, Sarr (nicking a living IMHO), Lennon and Fox, Hendo in goal.

The first 20 minutes or so made me realise why I haven't bothered to come of late with scant entertainment on offer, dire football and no shot until Forest managed to scrape something together on 23 minutes. A few powder puff shots from both sides and I was thanking my luck stars that Forest were as bad as we were in the final third. Then on 43 minutes, the inevitable happened and we went behind. Same old, same old. After the players half-time Sanatogen (look it up kids), we seem to have galvanised somewhat and there was more purpose about the side. Jacko was taken off early doors and replaced with Holmes-Dennis who went in at right back and Solly moved into midfield, not a great move as it meant we missed any chance of his marauding runs. THD was only on for a couple of minutes when he committed a cynical foul on the edge of our box and was duly booked.The ineffectual Ba was replaced by Gudmundsson, who appeared to inject a bit of life into the team and for a while was at the centre of everything creative. On 70 minutes Harriot escaped down the wing and crossed low to enable Mak to slide in and equalise for the Addicks. A bit of see-saw then with both sides going for it until THD pulled the shirt of the Forest winger twice in quick succession, right in front of the ref, who quite rightly showed a second yellow before giving marching orders. Forest seized their man advantage for a while but fair play to the Addicks, whose 10 men fought back and could have nicked a win in the end with the Forest keeper having to make a couple of fine saves from Harriot to preserve their away point. 

All in all a much better second half performance, but still not good enough to make me think that current form is leading us anywhere but League One. Oh, I do hope I'm wrong. A quick mention for Rhys Williams, who I didn't know we'd signed, apparently from Boro for 28 days. He has hardly played any football for 2 years, so he fitted right in when he came on. Didn't do a lot but looked good at shouting. A mention for the Forest fans who supported their team in numbers (just under 3000 of them I reckon) and were vocal throughout. On to the after match protest then. A great number turned out in the West Stand car park at 5pm with plenty of stick being directed towards RD, KM and Richard Murray. Peaceful yet forceful was the order of the day, with a number of punters in the car park being inconvenienced by not being able to get out quickly. Tough! 

Apparently Katrien escaped through the network of tunnels that RD has had built under the ground and is now safely back in her Docklands bunker. I could have made that bit up! I'm sure however, that before she left, I saw her mouth the words "Let them eat cake". Being a lightweight, I left after 40 minutes of protest although to be honest I was getting fed up with the chants in support of former players, and was expecting to hear chants in favour of Bartram, Firmani, Hales, get my drift. Make no mistake though, the protest is not only gaining momentum, but is being heard both nationally and further afield, evidenced by my listening to 5 Live on the way home and later postings on Charlton Life and Faceache. Enough from me now, except to say Vive Le Revolution. Faire progresser mes braves, faire progresser! A bientot.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Friday, 1 January 2016

The pressure's on

Two good pieces online today about the shambles that is Charlton Athletic. The Guardian's Nick Miller asks "Is Roland Duchatelet leading Charlton into the Valley of no return? Our own Charlton Champion, Darryl Chamberlain, posts a typically well-researched and edited article on "How Roland Duchatelt and Katrien Meire are killing Charlton Athletic."

Perfect back-drop for the pre and post-match protests planned for tomorrow. I won't be able to make the match but am hoping to join the sit-in at 5pm.

"Stand-up if you want them out!"