Il capo called me to an early morning meeting in London today. The meeting was inconclusive and I have to go to his home in Italy for another meeting. But it was a lovely mild autumn morning in London and from the penthouse floor of the Tower Hotel it was possible to look down the river towards Greenwich with Shooters Hill visible in the distance.
What this reminded me is that Charlton are, always have been, and always will be a London club. We have many supporters in Kent, but we are not the Kent club that plays in London. Hence, all talk of a Kent derby tomorrow is nonsense. However, apparently Gills' boss Mark Stimson has been dreaming about tomorrow's fixture since the play off final at Wembley: Dream
One of the problems we face in this division is that smaller teams see us a 'scalp' to be secured, turning our match against them in to their cup final where their rag, tag and bobtail sides play at a hitherto unknown level of determination and achievement.
Asked which team he most wanted to beat this season in the 4-4-2 pre-season preview, Gillingham fan Matt Gill [sic] named Charlton. Gillingham are certainly not that high up my list. Millwall, Leeds and even MK Dons come before them. Indeed, I am indifferent to the Gillingham match other than that it offers three points that need to be secured for our promotion push.
Can we win tomorrow? There are no injuries tomorrow, other than chronic crocks Leon McKenzie and Dean Sinclair. Will Parky be brave enough to try out a 4-4-2 formation away from home? I would like him to, but I suspect he will go for 4-5-1.
Will Gillingham beat us in a league match for the first time in 85 years? I doubt it? Will they manage to secure a point. That's more likely. Nevertheless, I think that we have enough skill, quality and (yes) motivation to take all three points and I am going for a 2-1 win for the Addicks.
I have recorded a slot on Plymouth Argyle for tonight's sports show on Radio Scilly (5-6 p.m., listen online) and the view certainly looks better from second in League 1 than second from bottom in the Championship. Let's hope we can consolidate our position tomorrow.
BTW, the official football season in the Scillies kicks off on Sunday with the Charity Shield match between last year's top two teams, Garrison Gunners and Woolpack Wanderers. Radio Scilly tell me tickets are still available.
We expect to be the only Charlton blog providing coverage from a shell shocked New Windmill Ground tomorrow of the clash between Leamington and Brackley Town. A caretaker manager from Somerset has been brought in while the Brakes board ponder who should replace Jason Cadden as manager.