The reserves are the latest victim of cost cutting at The Valley. They have a useful role in providing a competitive game for fringe players, but there will be fewer of those in future. Players returning from injury could be loaned out.
In the 1950s we very rarely went to reserve games. Indeed, the only one I can remember is a Combination Cup tie against Aldershot.
In more recent years, I have taken in the odd game when we played at The Valley and I have been in London. I recall one game against Norwich City when there were two particularly vociferous Norwich supporters in the row in front of us. The referee looked as if he was about to draw his pension and looked considerably startled when my friend bellowed across the almost empty ground, 'Get a grip ref!'
We did, of course, win the reserves championship more than once under Keith Peacock. We also got into the final of the reserves competition, but went down at home to a strong Manchester United side.
If one was looking for further cost cutting measures, why not disband the first team? Those who had already paid for season tickets could still turn up and buy a souvenir programme of the match that might have been. They could use the refreshment kiosks and then take their seats for the pre-match build up. The only difference would be that no teams would emerge.
They could then spend the next 45 minutes chatting to their neighbours (which many do anyway). At half time one could still have the Valley Gold and jackpot draws and dignitaries could appear on the pitch.
It would also be a great solution to the guilt felt by early leavers.
I'm off to Amsterdam for a couple of days for a workshop I am organising with Uefa participation with contributors from the 'Big 5' leagues and other European countries on European football. No doubt when I come back Phil Parkinson will still be in charge and there will be no news on the takeover.