Friday, 15 January 2010

Reading results off the table

When we were in the Premiership we went one spring to an away game at Norwich. The Canaries were bottom and were eventually relegated. We were lower mid-table as I recall. I though the game was evenly matched and a draw would have been a fair result but in the second half former Addick Matt Svensson scored the winner. I thought we had given a reasonable account of ourselves but when I got home there was a torrent of complaint from Addicks, and not just from the usual suspects. How could we lose to 'bottom club' Norwich? One of the things you shoild never do in football is read results off the table.

Wycombe are in the relegation places, but achieved a surprising away draw against Leeds last week. When we played them in the first match of the season it was evident that they had battling qualities and didn't give up easily.

Their fans are fanatical in a curious way. I saw Rushden and Diamonds play them at Nene Park in League 2 and the referee got fed up with the abuse of their then manager Lawrie Sanchez and sent him to the stands. This wasn't much help as the stands behind the dugout are quite shallow and Sanchez continued to jump up and down and shout abuse despite half hearted attempts by stewards to restrain him.

The assembled Wycombe fans took great exception to this and stayed in their stand after the game chanting 'Chairboys'. By the time we were halfway up the hill away from the ground they were still at it. Quite what point they were making to the empty fields around them was far from clear, although their own stadium also gives them an agricultural view.

A friend of mine who has lived in various parts of England before returning to his native health (Essex) took the view that High Wycombe was the least friendly placed he had lived in. It's a curious mixture. The furniture industry has now disappeared and the factories have been replaced by flats for commuters to London (there is one factory in Princes Risborough). It is the home to one of the most expensive and most successful girls schools in England (Wycombe Abbey).

It will be good to see Christian Dailly back in defence. Richardson is available, but may not be fully fit. Indeed a general question is how march sharp the Charlton side are, given that they have not played a match for three weeks and training must have been constrained by the weather.

One boost is the signing up of David Mooney for a further 28 days, although not for the whole season as had been hoped. Back from injury, he will be able to team up in an effective partnership with Deon Burton.

I will be at the game tomorrow. I would like to drive back up the M40 with three points: my great fear is of yet another draw and if pressed I would go for 2-2, but I think a repeat of the 3-2 win at The Valley could be achieved.

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