Charlton have some injury problems as Phil Parkinon seeks to make a good start to 2009. Rob Elliot, Andy Gray and Mark Hudson are all struggling, while Darren Ambrose - back from a loan spell at Ipswich Town - could also miss out through illness. So it looks like a return in goal for Nicky Weaver
'Ambrose trained on Friday but the doctor sent him home early as he was ill,' Parkinson told the club's E mail bulletin. 'We'll have a look at Darren on Saturday, but it doesn't look as if he will make the bench.' It's possible that Ambrose has caught relegation fever.
'We've got one or two injury problems. Robbie has a slight problem with his thigh and Huds has had a problem with his knee and his ankle and battled through the game against Sheffield United with an injection.' Given that Hudson is on four yellow cards, it might be best to drop him for the cup tie.
'Andy Gray has been playing with a nerve problem in his back which has affected his hamstring. He's also had an injection so we'll see how that settles. He didn't train on Friday but we'll know more on Saturday.' It looks certain that Burton will start up front, but whether the little seen Todorov will partner him remains to be seen, although he would be my preference ahead of McLeod and Dickson.
With Cranie returning to Portsmouth, Moutaoukil could start at right back, although Semedo has played (not too successfully) in that role. I would rather see him in midfield.
Parkinson can name seven substitutes for the game under FA rules. He has confirmed that he will have to sell players before bringing any in, but I have argued for some time that the size of the squad does us no favours.
Luke Varney's move to Derby County has been finalised, the Rams failing to realise that they had been sold a bill of goods.
I am forecasting a 1-0 win for Charlton and a solid start to Phil Parkinson's reign as supremo. Enjoy the game!