Monday, 1 September 2014

Transfer day interest in Gomez

Unconfirmed reports state that Liverpool and Newcastle United are expressing transfer deadline day interest in Joe Gomez. The stated policy of Roland is to try and hold on to such promising players, but it can be difficult for a player to resist the blandishments of Premiership clubs. Both clubs are believed to offer luxury coaches for their development squads, and heated substitutes' benches.

I am so happy to be in Wigan

It has now been confirmed that Andy Delort is going to Wigan. The picture above shows him joyously celebrating the move.

The Sevenoaks Chronicle (which has suddenly become a font of wisdom on Charlton) is claiming that we may sign Sylvan Ebanks-Blake. This is a little more plausible than some stories as he is a free agent looking for a club and wouldn't cost too much. I do think that he has something left in the tank.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

The one that got away

Charlton target Andy Delort has opted for the delights of Wigan pier. Charlton supremo Big Bob is disappointed that he failed to secure his signature as he was an 'interesting' player: Delort

It's always disappointing to lose out on a player to Championship rivals, particularly after such a long drawn out saga. However, I wouldn't blame Roland for refusing to pay over the odds.

Big Bob has not ruled out further signings before the transfer window closes, but emphasises that they would have to be good quality. I would have thought that any pod that was going to leave the mother ship that would have done so by now.

The signing of Bulot may allow Cousins to move into the centre where he is more effective and does not cramp Wiggins' style.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Late goal denies Addicks three points

We would have taken a draw before the game, but the 2-2 draw between Brighton and Hove Albion and Charlton today feels a bit like a defeat after the Seagulls scored an injury time equaliser. The Addicks are now 6th in the table.

Igor Vitokele opened the scoring for Charlton in the fourth minute with a powerful shot from the edge of the box. Charlton hit the hosts with a fast break and Yoni Buyens played in Vetokele, who beat goalkeeper David Stockdale with a well-placed low shot for his fourth goal of the season.

Brighton came close to wiping the deficit out less than a minute later when Portuguese midfielder Joao Teixeira, on a season-long loan from Liverpool, forced keeper Stephen Henderson to make a brilliant one-handed save.

Albion striker Craig Mackail-Smith failed to control an inviting pass into the box from Joe Bennett before Jake Forster-Caskey had a low goal-bound shot blocked for the Seagulls. Buyens was forced to put the ball behind for a corner from a cross by Andrew Crofts after Bruno Saltor had turned provider. Brighton threatened when a corner from Danny Holla was headed down by Dunk and Spanish striker Adrian Colunga was unable to direct his shot on target at the far post.

Charlton, who were frustrating Brighton with a well-organised defence, pushed forward before the interval and Johann Berg Gudmundsson saw a deflected shot fly wide before George Tucudean was off target with an angle drive from outside the area.

The Seagulls looked lively after the break. Dunk scored for Brighton on 67 minutes from a corner, but Vitokele scored a second.

The Angolan international latched on to a Simon Church cross, weaved his way past the Seagulls defence and struck a powerful shot to put the Addicks back in the lead. Charlton almost scored a third towards the end of the match, but Andre Bikey's header flew wide.

It was a miss the Addicks would come to rue, because in the 93rd minute, Kazenga LuaLua's ambitious cross fell to Dunk, who headed the ball into the net.

Player ratings

Provided by an Addick in attendance visiting from overseas:

Henderson One superb stop when their player was allowed through. Otherwise not much to do. I would like to see the goals in TV tonight to see whether he could have done better. Solly Good tackling skills, reasonable distribution, but I felt he gave far too much room to a very good winger. The first goal seemed to go over his head. Wiggins Disappointing to me. Capable in winning the ball but too predictable in turning inside and passing back. Bikey Danny Shittu lookalike, athletic and hard to muscle off the ball. A few lapses of concentration that could have been punished, especially the overhead kick. Haim Experienced and capable. Could have the same effect on our defenders as Costa had in his day at the higher level.

Gudmundsson Started brightly but faded. Should become a decent player. Jackson Skilled and intelligent but too slow and overall does not contribute as much as the team needs Buyens The player we have needed for a long time. Good timing at interceptions, quick to move the ball forward, athletic and strong. Cousins My first view of him and I was disappointed. He looked too slight and also looked uncomfortable in front of Wiggins. Possibly the lack of options given by Cousins was the reason for Wiggins passing back so often. With Buyens in control in the centre he may do well alongside or on the right but I think he looked out of place today.

George Did not contribute a great deal and no surprise he made way at half time. Igor Saving the best until last. The most exciting player I have seen in a Charlton shirt for some time.

Subs: Church Did what he was supposed to do, linking up and putting the defence under pressure, but does not seem a goal threat. Wilson Caused a midfield re-shuffle when he came on. Worked well with Solly but does not create openings going forward. Fox looks composed enough and places himself intelligently but the game rather passed him by apart from one nice idea that unfortunately was read by the defence.

I think we really need a strong central midfielder beside Buyens who can power through to support attacks and shoot without fear. Too many attacks petered out through lack of midfield support and the ball ended up going backwards from promising positions.

Glass Half Empty

Derek from Dymchurch writes: That Belgian geezer has some questions to answer. We should have won at Brighton and Brentford. We are already slipping down the table. We may be scoring goals, but we are also shipping them. We are playing too much football. It's all very well having possession, not that we had much anyway yesterday, we need to get the ball forward rather than passing back to another Charlton player.

Bulot signs from the mother ship

Fredéric Bulot has signed on a season long loan from the mother ship. This is one of the rare occasions when the official site delivers news: Bulot

The 23-year old from Gabon is described as a left-footed box-to-box midfielder: Career details . See him score an exceptional goal here (although I am sure he doesn't do it every week): Magnifique

With his career stalling in Belgium, his first preference was to go to France. However, assured that Charlton was a predominantly French-speaking club, he accepted the Eurostar ticket, Oyster card and room at the Swallow Hotel (now rebadged as the Marriott): Angleterre . The beverage department says he may take a walk round Bexleyheath this afternoon, so bear this in mind if you are not going to Brighton.

Johnnie Jackson had better get on with that 'Teach Yourself French' course!

Friday, 29 August 2014

Brighton bring in Baldock

Brighton have bought striker Sam Baldock from Bristol City for around £2m. Seen as a possible Charlton target in the past, Baldock is known as a predator and will be available for selection against the Addicks tomorrow: Baldock

Charlton have won only one of the last seven meetings. Their only win since 2009 was 3-2 at The Valley in December last season. Brighton are unbeaten in the last three meetings at home, though they have won only one. Charlton's last win there was 2-0 in League One in December 2009.

Keeper Stephen Henderson will have a late fitness test. Chris Solly is fit.

Odds for the game: Brighton 5/6, Draw 11/5, Charlton 3/1.

The Seagulls are trialling a new smart phone app developed by the University of Sussex. This allows phones to share bandwidth by creating a network. Fans can communicate with each other, receive live updates on other games and travel information, and rate the referee. (Today he is Graham Salisbury from Lancashire).

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Will we get Delort after all?

I have never known a transfer saga as long and complex as this one, but it appears that Tours have not yet concluded a deal to sell Andy Delort to Wigan: Delort

What is more a rival club have made a larger bid of their own which includes the offer of an intriguing link up with the Tours training centre. Charlton would be in a position to make such an offer.

The Tours statement reads: 'There have been a number of rumours that suggest Andy Delort is going everywhere in Europe (Germany, England, Belgium, Spain, France…) since the beginning go the transfer window. The latest has been suggesting that he has found an agreement with English side Wigan. At the moment, not a single agreement has been found with this club, even if discussions are ongoing. Discussions are also underway with several other clubs. A more important offer has been made by another British side, one which includes a club partnership which is very interesting for the youth system at Tours. The window is not closed, and official informations will be communicated via the club’s official website.'

The latest news (Friday evening) is that Wolverhampton Wanderers are now favourites to sign the player.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Warnock back at Palace

Back from a few days in Beijing performing the role of 'elderly foreign person' and I find that Neil Warnock has been appointed manager at Palace: Warnock

We're out of the league cup and Delort has one to Wigan. Standard Liege have been knocked out of the Champions League. Derek from Dymchurch has texted to say: 'I told you the wheels were coming off.'

Midfielder Frederic Bulot is reported to have joined from the mother ship: Career details

Beverage department sources are saying that attacking midfielder Jonathan Viera Ramos is joining from Valencia, but there is no independent confirmation: Jonathan Viera