Monday, 31 January 2011

U's depend on subsidy

Two upper mid-table clubs with hopes of a play-off place meet in the 8th versus 9th clash at The Valley tomorrow. However, the U's have an average attendance of 4,221, despite offering what their chairman insists is a quality product. Subsidies from their chairman keep them going: Colchester

Charlton to loan Bessone

Charlton look likely to take out-of-favour Leeds defender Fredrico Bessone on a loan until the end of the season. He is a left back but can also play on the left-wing: Bessone

Fry has been found deficient at times and Jackson now has a berth in midfield from where he has a nice habit of suddenly appearing in the box. says this of Bessone:

The left-sider was hailed a major coup when Simon Grayson snapped him up on a free on a three-year-deal last summer from Swansea. However from the outset he looked woefully unfit and lacking the basic essentials of the art of defending.

Indeed it was hard to see why Swansea, an excellent footballing side were reportedly sorry to see him leave South Wales. His only meaningful contribution to Leeds was to act as an interpreter for Luciano Becchio on those roadshow things Uncle Ken arranges from time-to-time.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Dyer in as No.2

A number of different sources are reporting that Alex Dyer has been appointed as assistant to Chris Powell. One of them is here: Dyer

It is still possible that Dean Kiely will be brought in to strengthen the backroom staff.

Dyer played for Charlton on loan in 1990 and was then signed for £100,000 by Sir Lennie Lawrence, a bargain price considering he cost Palace £250,000 only two years later.

Dyer has proved a popular coach at the Hampsters where he has been in charge of the reserve team.

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Flash - match off

Today's match at Rochdale is off. This comes from a CAFC official tweet. Frozen pitch oop north.

So we will drop further down the table and have more fixture congestion. Powell out now!

Friday, 28 January 2011

Muskrat at it again

Remember how he finished the career of one of our players, Matty Holmes? (See Matty .) Well he's been up to his tricks again down under: Muscat

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Three clubs in for Sodje

Three clubs have expressed an interest in Akpo Sodje who has slipped down the pecking order at The Valley following the arrival of Bradley Wright-Phillips. The news has been confirmed by Pravda: Sodje

Sodje's recent role has to come on a sub in the hope of unsettling the opposition which only works partially if at all.

A Dale fan writes

The Rochdale fan who wrote for us before gives his views on how Rochdale are doing:

After a barren run of one win in eleven competitive games, the enforced winter break has completely revitalised Rochdale and 2011 has been superb thus far, with Dale topping the current form table over the past six games and moving from 19th to 9th in the league one table. We have rediscovered how to win games again. A 3-2 win over Tranmere on New Year's Day was the catylyst, in a game that could have gone either way up the last kick. This was followed by a 2-1 win away at Oldham with Chris O'Grady on the mark twice against the club that sold him to Dale a year ago, and then a dogged 1-0 win at Dagenham, with O'Grady again scoring. A 1-1 draw at home to Leyton Orient was followed by a 0-0 draw against Bournemouth, in a superb advert for league 1 football, and then another dogged and determined win away at Yeovil.

We have learnt a lot about league one football over the past few months and no-one is getting carried away and shouting about the play-offs now, unlike earlier in the year. After we beat Huddersfield 3-0 at Spotland at then end of September, we all got a bit above ourselves, and found it a bit difficult over the subsequent months when we were brought back down to earth with a bang. We are now just enjoying the moment, with Charlton, Sheffield Wednesday and Southampton all due to visit Spotland in the next month. We are allowing ourselves to dream just a little, and looking fondly at the play-off zone, while still keeping an eye on the sides below us.

The key players remain the same. Midfield talisman Gary Jones, now on 13 goals for the season, his best ever haul, talented defender Craig Dawson and cultured striker Chris O'Grady.

As I have to be at Coventry Cathedral on Saturday afternoon, the Rochdale fan will be providing a match report.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

The big screen

At the New Windmill Ground last night we couldn't find the remote control to start the electronic scoreboard. But at least we have one. One morale boost for the Addickted would be to get the big screen working again.

Brakes beat Centurions 1-0, the winning goal being scored in the 63rd minute by former Canvey Island ace James Rowe.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Wright-Phillips signs

As we have been trailing for the last few days, Bradley Wright-Phillips has now signed for Charlton: Wright-Phillips

The fee is undisclosed, but the Western Morning News is saying it was less than the £300k Reading were prepared and may not be unadjacent to the £265k Plymouth have in outstanding tax debts.

The 26-year old is the son of former Arsenal and England player Ian Wright, and younger half-brother to Manchester City and England international Shaun Wright-Phillips, Ian's adopted son, with whom he used to play with at Manchester City. He grew up in Brockley, South London and attended the state school Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College nearby in New Cross Gate. He earned five England U20 caps.

Most Addicks seem underwhelmed by the news, but I am pleased. We are still not a wealthy club. Wright-Phillips is the leading scorer in League 1, despite having been troubled by a knee condition all season. He has been advised that he can continue playing without worsening the condition.

Not good news for Benson or even more so for Pawel Abbott, both recruited by Parky.

Monday, 24 January 2011

The rumour mill

Unconfirmed reports state that Matt Holland is returning as assistant manager and that Jason Euell will be joining the squad.

As far as Matt Holland is concerned, 'Captain Cleanpants' has carved out a career as an authoritative media pundit. He is a very nice guy, but I think that Chris Powell need is an experienced No.2 who has been out and about a bit in management. Sir Lennie Lawrence would have been an excellent candidate, but has joined the Glaziers.

Jason Euell may be a 'Premier League' ace, but my initial reaction is that he is past it and is not what we need. He is also reportedly on £7,500 a week which I have thought was not a good use of a limited budget. Unfortunately, he has been the victim of a scam that has left him bankrupt: Euell

Sir Chris's latest interview

Chris Powell has given a number of interviews in recent days and to some extent they have covered the same themes, such as the fact that he didn't apply for the job and thought he had just an outside chance. However, it is worth giving a few quotes from yesterday's double page spread in the Football League Paper.

'I know the fans remember me fondly as a player,' said Chris. 'But, of course, if you don't cut it as a manager, they'll let you know about it. I fully realise that all the hard work as a player could be gone if things don't go to plan. In some ways it's a bit of a spur - I want to keep that link with the fans going because I've had some wonderful times here.'

Chris said that he had exchanged mesages with Phil Parkinson, but had not been able to speak to him yet but hoped to do so: 'He's a good man and I hope he's back in football soon.'

He revealed that he had said to all the players, '"You have a chance with me". If they impress me and show the right attitude, then no problem. If a young player can add something to us, he'll be in the team.'

Chris is midway through a course in football management, but whether this is the certificate offered by Warwick Business School and taken by Peter Shirtliff is unclear. (For more details see: Certificate

Powell and Charlton face a tough test next Saturday when they are away to Rochdale, currently first in the form table.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Addicks maintain interest in Wright-Phillips

Charlton are maintaing their interest in Bradley Wright-Phillips but face continuing competition from Glasgow Rangers for the leading League 1 scorer who has netted 13 goals this season (one more than Johnnie Jackson).

It is now known that when Addicks supremo Chris Powell went to the MK Dons versus Argyle match last week one of his objectives was to talk to Pilgrims officials about the former Southampton hit man. Argyle are currently conducting a fire sale of players as they struggle to stay afloat. If they do not sell Wright-Phillips now they will get nothing for him in the summer when his contract expires.

The 25-year old failed a medical at Reading because of knee problems, but went to see a London specialist this week who cleared him of serious damage.

Chris Powell has emphasised that there will be no splashing out on new signings. 'We've got to a bit clever,' he said. So expect some loan signings.

For me the #1 priority remains a young and mobile central defender. Dailly has good positional sense, but he needs a different sort of player to partner him.

After yesterday's victory, Charlton have moved out of the relegation positions in the form table.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Great result but not a great performance

Charlton beat Plymouth Argyle 2-0 at The Valley today to provide a winning start to Chris Powell's managerial career. It was a great result, but by all accounts not a great performance. With the teams just ahead of us winning, Charlton stay just outside the play off places.

Plymouth just edged the possession, but Charlton had more shots on target, nine to five. A volley by Kari Arnason for the visitors went just over the bar and it was 0-0 at half time.

Wagstaff opened the scoring for the Addicks on 55 minutes when he pounced on a poor back pass by so-called secret weapon Marcel Seip and put the ball past Button in the Plymouth goal. Eccleston made it 2-0 on 90 minutes when he cut inside the defence and scored with a left-footed effort.

Questions have been raised about the official attendance which was surprisingly low at 16,607. My wife and I would have been counted, but we were not there. We went down the M40 to High Wycombe to pick up a train, only to find that none were running. I should have checked, of course. Even if we had reached The Valley before kick off, parking would have been a problem.

Mick Collins has written an interesting essay around today for When Saturday Comes: Charlton

Friday, 21 January 2011

The team of 1985-6. Where are they now?

Terry Towner: runs TJ removals in the Brighton area.
George Shipley: assistant community officer with the Barcodes.
Garry Kimble: until last May manager at Burnham Ramblers.
Mark Stuart: works at a building society.
Alan Kimble: was supremo at Aveley.
Jimmy Loveridge: motor dealer in Swansea and part-time coach at Swansea City's centre of excellence.
Paul Friar: Whereabouts unknown.
Simeon Hodson: Community support office in Warwickshire.
John Humphrey: PE teacher in Croydon.
Darren Anderson: Not known.
Nicky Johns: Funding officer for Crystal Palace community sports trust.
John Pearson: Mortgage adviser and matchday website commentator for the Owls.
Tony Lange: Revenue protection manager with Southern Railway.
Les Barry: Works in father's electrical wholesale store in S.London.
John Pender: Lives in Telford.
Mike Flanagan: Works for company that builds and fits swimming pools.
Mark Aizelwood: Football agent.
Robert Lee: Broadcasting pundit.
Carl Harris: Took over family's removals business in Neath.
Mark Reid: A driving instructor in Irvine.
Peter Shirtliff: Has held management and coaching positions in football.

Information from The Football League Paper.

Chris Perry interview

Many Addicks I know rated Chris Perry when he was at Charlton. In this interview he talks about 'Uncle Powell' and also about an aspect of Iain Dowie's policies that I did not know about: if you're over 30, you're over the hill. What a genius! Read more here: Perry

Seip is Argyle's secret weapon

Marcel Seip was confined to bench warming duties during his spell at Charlton. He is seen as having played a key role in Argyle's shock 3-1 victory at Franchise FC on Tuesday and is now raring to go against the Addicks tomorrow: Seip

Cheerful Plymouth boss Peter Reid admits that Charlton are a good side and that it will be a tough match tomorrow with the crowd behind new manager Chris Powell. His game plan is to get the ball and hang on to it, denying Charlton possession. In other words, don't be surprised if there are ten men behind the ball. We need an early goal to prevent a 0-0.

Argyle are still in a serious financial crisis and their fire sale of players is continuing (see the football economy page).

It's going to be a big day for the Addickted tomorrow. My wife, who let her season ticket lapse, has bought a ticket. Do remember, however, that it's still the same bunch of relatively mediocre players, minus Lee Martin, who for all his shortcomings at least brought some pace.

I don't set much store by form tables (final positions are not decided by the last six matches) but it is worth noting that we were third from bottom at the weekend.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Addicks in for Bradley Wright-Phillips?

Are we in for Bradley Wright Phillips? The Plymouth evening paper seems to think so: Phillips

Charlton supremo Chris Powell watched him on Tuesday night when Argyle won 3-1 at MK Dons. Because of Plymouth's financial problems, he is available at a fire sale price, less than the £300,000 Rangers offered for him.

I have subsequently learnt that he failed a medical at Reading with a knee problem.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

The £53m player

According to Radio 5 this morning, Darren Bent is the most expensive player in the history of British football. Admittedly the figure of £53m is a somewhat artificial calculation done by adding up all the transfer fees he has accumulated over his career. But I always like the number 53 as it reminds me of the bus I used to catch from Plumstead Common to The Valley in my early days as a supporter.

Bent is clearly feeling a bit sensitive about 'one greedy bastard' type accusations. But if most football fans are honest with themselves, they would accept a higher salary if it was offered to them. As Andy Hunt, a footballer for whom I have a high regard, once pointed out any player is going to play for a number of clubs during the course of his career.

Of course, if you are Marcus 'Deadline Day' Bent you are always on the move. He has now gone out on loan to Sheffield United as his career stutters to a close. Whatever talent he had was not helped by his high octane lifestyle.

The other Bent was certainly a joy to watch at Charlton. Unfortunately, we do not get a cut of this latest transfer fee, although Spurs do. For a few hundred thousands pounds we could get a young, mobile central defender of reasonable quality.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Rob Lee recalls 1985-6

In 1985-6 Charlton, playing in exile at Selhurst Park, were promoted to the top flight. Speaking to The League Paper Rob Lee recalled, 'They were tough times at Charlton, so without a doubt I rate it as one of the highlights of my career.'

Rob recalled, 'I knew that the club needed to get back to the Valley and we were getting low crowds for a team pushing for the top league. Pre-season we didn't think promotion was a possibility. I wouldn't have expected us to go up, I don't think any of us did, but results seemed to go our way, we played very well and had some good players.'

'We bought about five or six players that summer but no big names, just players [Sir] Lennnie [Lawrence] thought could do a good job for us. We had a few youngsters coming through and it gelled a lot quicker than we thought it would.'

'There were problems off the field but Lennie got together a good side. He was very meticulous in what he did and always organised the team very well. Even with that range of money he bought very well and often sold players on for more than he paid for them.'

'It was a well balanced team without any outstanding players. John Humphreys was one of the best right full backs I've seen. He used to bomb forward like full backs do now.'

'Peter Shirtliff was an outstanding defender and Mark Reid was also a good left back. We had a decent back four which is really the foundation of a good team. You get a defence that is organised and work together and work forward from them. That was our main strength.'

'We had John Perason as well who was a natural goalscorer. He did well for us but he also did well for me as I was playing up front at the time.'

'Promotion was sealed away at Carlisle. Would you believe, we won 3-2 after being 2-0 down. We celebrated by having a few cans of lager in the coach but nothing like they do nowadays.'

'Getting promoted was a massive boost for the club achieved against all the odds. Selhust Park is only seven miles from The Valley but it's a dog of a journey for Charlton fans'.

'The crowds were small but we had a great team spirit. We got Charlton into the top league and we stayed there.'

So, farewell then, Lee Martin

Lee Martin has been recalled by the Tractors after their change of manager. Concerns were expressed when he was not part of the squad at Hillsborough last Saturday.

He wasn't the finished article by any means but he brought commitment and pace and I am sorry to see him go.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Palace to leave Selhurst

Pravda has revealed that Crystal Palace are to announce a plan to leave Selhust Park and to move to their historic home at the Crystal Palace National Sports Stadium: Palace

The new owners have apparently decided that refurbishing Selhurst Park is a lost cause. The move would also restore the link between the name and the site of their stadium.

Unconfirmed reports state that Sir Lennie Lawrence is to leave Hereford and join Palace as assistant manager.

Charlton Athletic have refused to comment on reports of a possible return to Catford Southend.

Bostock in on loan?

Chris Powell is a Spurs fan and now he has swooped for one of their players on loan, 19-year old midfielder John Bostock: Bostock

He doesn't seem to have made much of an impression at Spurs or out on loan at Hull City, but perhaps he will find his level in League 1.

In response to a comment, here is a link to his Wikipedia profile: Bostock

Apparently he was the youngest ever Glazier to appear at Sainsbury's.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Charlton fight hard for away point

A spirited performance by Charlton saw them secure an away point against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough with a 2-2 draw at a ground where they have not won in the league since 1953.

I couldn't pick up any commentary at first from Charlton and then it seemed to be from a match involving Rochdale so I switched to the home commentary. It was rather amusing listening to two glum Yorkshiremen trying to console each other.

I missed Waggy's opening goal on 5 minutes, but heard Johnnie Jackson put the ball past Nicky Weaver on 7 minutes to extend the lead to 2-0.

Charlton were passing well, although they tended to sit back a bit. The Owls then had a chance to get back into the game with a penalty of their own, but it was saved. The local commentators described this as a 'miss', although they were perplexed that this was the first time their penalty taker had missed. They then had to admit that Elliot had made a 'decent' (i.e., excellent) save by diving to his left.

Half times: Owls 0, Addicks 2

The local commentators had remarked that Wednesday were a one half team and they can storming out of the traps after the break. The swirling wind in the penalty area meant that the ball was hanging high in the air, giving opportunities to the big lads of the home team.

Heffernan scored their opener on 48 minutes. Anyinsah had a chance to reply immediately at the other end, but put the ball over the bar. Charlton were under the cosh and after a succession of corners Johnson made it 2-2 on 52 minutes.

Charlton were not defending well, emphasising the need for a younger and more mobile central defender. Sodje was brought on to give greater physical presence with Anyinsah being withdrawn. Then Racon was withdrawn to give Eccleston his Charlton debut. The youngster seemed to lift Charlton to some extent.

Elliot made good some saves, while Francis defended well and made his presence felt at the other end. He provided a great cross to Sodje, but Purse was able to take the pace off the ball and Weaver managed to collect.

It looked as if the Owls were going to score in injury time, first through a good effort from 25 yards out by O'Connor. The Owls had a succession of corners with the ball coming off the inside of the bar and being put away by Francis.

It was a pulsating game and there was no lack of commitment from the Charlton players. The squad does need strengthening, however.

I predict that this will be Keith Peacock's last game as Charlton manager.

Charlton are now outside the play off places in 7th place, MK Dons having gone up to 6th.

Owls fear Powell reaction

Sheffield Wednesday fear that the appointment of Chris Powell as manager will revitalise Charlton's players for today's fixture at Hillsborough: Owls

I know that many Addicks have decided to go to today's match. Unfortunately I have a work meeting starting at 11 a.m. and that rules me out. Our usual away match reporter Paul May has gone down with the 'flu and Philippa Nicholson only makes the journey from Kent for home matches.

After all the euphoria of yesterday, it is important to remember that it is still (with one addition) the same bunch of relatively limited players and it will take a while for Chris to turn the ship round. Indeed, my current assumption is that, given the timing of the appointment, Keith Peacock will be in charge today. If he could stay for the rest of the season as an assistant to Chris, that would be ideal.

Chris needs to think about bringing in new players and also has to get the team playing football again. Even if the results are not immediately achieved, at least games should be less dire to watch. Realistically I think it is the play offs for us again this season, but another Wembley triumph achieved by Chris is a mouth watering prospect.

In the long line of Charlton managers since the somewhat shadowy and scandal ridden figure of Walter Rayner, notorious for telling officials what he thought of them, this is one of the most daring and exciting appointments. It may be a roller coaster ride, but it has already revived the spirits of the Addickted.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Chris Powell appointed

As anticipated, Christopher George Robin Powell has been formally appointed manager of Charlton Athletic Football Club.

Here is a commentary from a well-known Addick which for me says it all very eloquently:

I've been trying not to get carried away. Chris Powell is one of the very best people I have ever known in football. Not that I know him personally but his achievements, his conduct on and off the field, and his public demeanour, are just fantastic, and he is essentially a Charlton man. He embodies everything we like to think the Charlton "brand" stands for. If you are looking for the polar opposite of Dennis Wise, Chrissie is your man.

But can he manage?

A lot of people seem to think that a manager has to be "hard", so that his team does not get turned over. It is assumed that because Parky seems to be a nice bloke, that he wasn't hard, and therefore that's why we get turned over. The argument was that Wise would instill this "hardness". I always thought this was a complete load of [deleted]. Leaving aside that being an aggressive little so-and-so is not the same as being 'hard', I do not recall Curbs the player being seen as a hard man at all. Much more Alan Devonshire than Julian Dicks, surely. The on-field persona that we see tells us nothing at all about which players go on to be successful managers. We simply don't know.

What we do know is that Chris Powell has prepared for a management career with the same meticulous dedication that he showed in his playing career, which took him all the way to international honours at a time when other players would have given it up as fantasy. That's important to me, because I believe that football management requires professionalism as much as any other management role.

Before Christmas I spoke with [name deleted] and he told me he'd stayed with Chris in a Cape Town apartment while both were working during the World Cup. X knew nothing about what was coming, but was sure Chris would make a great manager, of Charlton. When I asked him if he wasn't too "nice" a guy, he replied "I wouldn't worry about that".

Finally, the new owners. We are all worried about intransparency, and should continue to be so. But the fact is that they have consistently denied that Dennis Wise was in the frame, and there is no evidence that this was untrue. If they had read all the objections to Wise from us supporters, and wanted to say "We're listening to you" then this appointment could hardly be a better way to show that they listened.

So what more can we possibly ask? If we had been in the Prem, this would certainly be a risky low-budget sentimental appointment. We are actually in the Third Division. We are actually the size of club where someone like Chris would start his managerial career.

I am a bit scared, but mainly because I have such a high regard for Chris Powell that the thought of our boo boys getting on his back is almost more than I could bear. But on the other hand, I just cannot but be tremendously excited, and proud too.

Sven endorses Chris

Sven Goran Eriksson has endorsed Chris Powell as quality: Sven

Of course, the doubters would say 'he would say that anyway' or 'it just confirms how useless Sven is.'

For me what is significant is that the Silver Fox offered Chrissie a post at Newcastle and he turned it down. To me that shows good judgement.

Charlton negativity?

An interesting range of reactions, but some of the famous Charlton negativity and pessimism already surfacing. All fans are negative about their own clubs to some extent, but it was the Sporting Post that once observed that the Addickted were especially so.

That might be a rational reaction to the club's history: only one major trophy and that in the year I was born. Personally I always blame Hitler because I think if we had continued to develop in the 1940s we might well have won the league.

The feeling of solidarity engendered by the return to The Valley campaign overcame this negativity for a while and I think this persisted as we consolidated in the second tier, developed the ground and then, on the day of all days, got promoted at Wembley. We came back down again, but no one blamed Curbs or the team for that given our resources and we were champions the following year and established ourselves in the Premiership.

After a few seasons, the negativity started to creep in. People deny it now, but there were complaints about mid-table mediocrity and Curbs not being able to take us to the next level, whatever that was for a club the size of Charlton.

I enjoyed being in the Premiership because I liked seeing the so-called top players for myself. One was able to see Shearer administer the elbow and get away with it or have his card rescinded. We won some enjoyable victories against Arsenal, Chelsea and Livepool, unfortunately not United, but Fergie always respected Curbs and The Valley which he said was a difficult ground to play at.

I would be happy with us getting back to the Championship and consolidating there in the medium-term. I think that the new owners have the determination and the means to do that.

I supported Parky while he was manager. I thought he had a difficult inheritance and very few resources to cope with it. In the circumstances he did a decent job. My information was that the club was very close to the brink financially. Not only would have paying off Parky been financially testing, we couldn't afford anyone better.

We suffered three bad home defeats. The one against Brighton was really their victory rather than our loss. The one against Walsall could be written off as a bad day at the office, you always get one every season. But I think that the Swindon loss indicated that something was fundamentally wrong. As the New York Addick pointed out, our position in the table masked the problems we faced. For once the form table was the one to pay attention to.

I think that Parky made poor tactical decisions, possibly he started to panic as things went wrong and he saw his job on the line. In any event the board did not like what they saw and noted the reactions of fans. They want to increase the gate and appointing Chris Powell is one way of doing that. I do not think that before the Swindon game that they have decided to sack Parky or they would have had a successor lined up.

This post is already too long so I will write about Chris Powell later in the day. For now, welcome back Chris, I am sure people will set their reservations to one side and get behind you at The Valley. But please insist on some new signings because in my view the problem has been the team at least as much as the manager.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Chris Powell is new Charlton manager

Chris Powell is to be the new Charlton manager: Sir Chris

Many fans think it is a sentimental decision, but I do not think the new owners are driven by sentiment. It is a risk but, when you look at the alternatives, it is a risk worth taking.

It is being reported that Dean Kiely will be part of the coaching staff.

Eddie Howe goes oop north

Eddie Howe has decided to leave his beloved Cherries to manager Burnley: Clarets

There is a certain logic in this as Burnley are the most highly placed of the three clubs who approached him and the one most recently in the Premiership, albeit for one season.

Betting orders have shortened on Chris Powell, but he may be better staying at Leicester to learn from Sven. It was Sven, of course, who selected him to play for England.

Keith Peacock will be in charge at Hillsborough on Saturday so no appointment is imminent.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Abbott out on loan?

An unconfirmed report states that Pawel Abbott may go out on loan to Bristol Rovers. Apparently Abbott played for the Gasheads manager when he was at Oldham.

He has not been a conspicuous success at Charlton and we now have other options with the arrival of Eccleston.

Gary Johnson: a Posh view

A Peterborough United blog offers some critical comments on Gary Johnson's tenure at the club: Johnson

Latest odds

FYI, the latest odds on the new Charlton manager. I can't take some of these names seriously. As for Gary Johnson at 1/5, that suggests the power of rumour. To me it's all further evidence of why one rarely sees a poor bookmaker.

Gary Johnson 1/5
Dennis Wise 7/1
Andy Scott 8/1
Alan Curbishley 16/1
Chris Coleman 20/1
Chris Hughton 20/1
Gareth Southgate 20/1
Gary Waddock 20/1
Gianfranco Zola 20/1
Gus Poyet 20/1
Paul Tisdale 20/1
Glenn Hoddle 25/1
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink 25/1
Paul Hart 25/1
Peter Taylor 25/1
Brian Laws 33/1
Chris Wilder 33/1
Dean Holdsworth 33/1
Gareth Ainsworth 33/1
Gary Megson 33/1
George Burley 33/1
Keith Curle 33/1
Kevin Blackwell 33/1
Mark McGhee 33/1
Martin ONeill 33/1
Ray Wilkins 33/1
Stuart Pearce 33/1
Terry Brown 33/1

Liverpool striker to join Addicks

At last some benefit (potentially) from our link up with Liverpool. Striker and starlet Nathan Eccleston is training at Sparrows Lane and will sign forms for the rest of the season on Wednesday.

More at: Eccleston

His career profile is here: Wikipedia

He's raw and young, but will he be any worse than Abbott or Benno?

Let's get real

The latest odds for Charlton manager are:

Johnson, G 1/2
Wise D 3/1
Scott A 5/1
Curbishley A 6/1
Coleman C 8/1
Waddock G 8/1
Ferguson D 10/1
Hasselbank J 10/1
Hughton C 12/1

Of course, these can mean anything or nothing. What I hear is that Chris Hughton is being lined up to replace an increasingly gloomy Avram Grant at West Ham who sounds as if he has had enough. It's frightening to see JFH at 10/1, but I don't take that seriously. Darren Ferguson is going back to Peterborough, I understand.

Apparently on Charlton life there is talk of Exeter manager Paul Tisdale, but that doesn't sound very ambitious to me. Gary Johnson has had a very chequered record. Curbs is not going to come back. Chris Coleman was a flop at Coventry (mind you, most people are) and has the biggest book of excuses in football.

Perhaps the difficulty of finding a suitable replacement puts Parky in a more favourable light. However, I still think the time had come to move on. I am prepared to stick with Keith Peacock while we get this right.

My Roy of the Rovers solution would be Chris Powell with Steve Brown as No.2.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Howe stays put

This has been a very fast-moving story and it is difficult to keep up as I have to spend some time on the day job. The latest news I have from Bournemouth sources is (i) that Charlton have been wavering and (ii) that we can expect a definitive announcement around 1 p.m.

UNCONFIRMED FLASH 12.53: Howe is staying at Cherries. If true, perhaps our original 'false' story was correct! This has now been confirmed by the BBC and SkySports.

I think that the new board deserves credit for going after him. My view is that they was no premeditated conspiracy to get rid of Parky, they simply didn't like what they saw against Swindon, bearing in mind other recent results, and they noted the crowd reaction.

If Howe doesn't come, Gary Johnson is now available. I have not thought this through, but my initial reactions are lukewarm, although I wouldn't judge him by Peterborough as I don't have a high opinion of the set up there. Even we could beat them 5-1.

Howe to meet Cherries squad at 11 a.m.

Eddie Howe has reflected on his position overnight and a special meeting of the Cherries squad has been called for 11 a.m. when he will tell them his decision. Will he stay? Will he go to Palace? Or will he come to Charlton?

I don't know, but I am hoping against hope that I will get one of the best birthday presents ever and that he will come to Charlton.

It's one of the biggest stories for years in Bournemouth: Cherries

Monday, 10 January 2011

Eddie Howe to be new manager?

One of our canine match analyst team awaits news from the south coast

Reports are being received from a number of sources that Eddie Howe is poised to sign as the new Charlton manager. Very sensibly he has turned down Crystal Palace. He has also decided not to go oop north to Burnley.

Charlton's new owners are prepared to double the salary he receives at the Cherries. The 33-year old is rated as one of the best younger managers in English football.

However, the latest news is that Bournemouth are fighting back and talks are taking place at Dean Court. Howe has a strong emotional attachment to the Cherries: Howe

It has also been reported on regional television news on the south coast that Crystal Palace have matched Charlton's offer and thrown in a trolley full of groceries from Sainsbury's as well.

Howe is also reported to be well settled with his family on the Costa Geriatrica, admittedly an attractive part of the country. Does he want a challenge that could take him to the next level on a sustainable basis?

Canine match analyst Homer the Cherry Hound has stated that he will leave his post at Didcot Town and see out his days at The Valley if Howe joins the Addicks.

Palace have been chasing Rochdale's manager.

Nicky Forster attacks new Valley regime

Whether Nicky Forster thinks his short stay at The Valley gives him a licence to attack the Charlton board is a matter for debate. But under the byline 'Brentford striker's viewpoint', which certainly gives him cred, he launches into the new regime at Charlton in The Football League Paper.

However, apparently Phil Parkinson is a good friend of his. He states, 'This week has seen the departure of good friend and former manager Phil Parkinson from Charlton Athletic after two years in charge. With them fifth in the table and only onw win off the automatic place the decision seems baffling to say the least.'

Well, as the New York Addick has pointed out, if we kept on losing home matches we should be able to win it wouldn't be long before we were in a relegation battle. We are nine points behind Brighton, but just eight ahead of Tranmere in 20th place.

Forster continues, 'It was particularly fickle to see the new owners celebrating and preening themselves after Charlton took the lead against Swindon, apparently satsified with all, only to deem Parky's position untenable some 60 minutes later.'

I don't see why the new owners shouldn't celebrate us taking the lead. Admittedly, doubts have been expressed about whether they had already decided they wanted Parky to go. Equally, after seeing the performance against Swindon and our recent record, it wasn't unreasonable for the new regime to want a clean sweep.

BTW, I have no financial interest in The Football League Paper but I do think it is good value and it can now be bought more cheaply online. Even if you don't want to subscribe, they have some interesting tweets.

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Charlton defeated at Hotspurs ground

Charlton Athletic were defeated 3-0 this afternoon by Tottenham Hotspur in a FA Challenge Cup third round match at the Hotspurs' ground in White Hart Lane, Haringey.

The Addicks held their own in the first half with Wagstaff impressing. The Addickted were in good voice and it was 0-0 at half time.

Hotspurs' manager Harry Redknapp was taken the game seriously and brought on Modric from a strong bench at half time. The substitute immediately changed the balance of the game and Townsend opened the scoring for Spurs on 49 minutes, the first senior goal for the 19-year old.

'Judas' Defore then put the match beyond reach with goals on 58 and 60 minutes, but at least did not score a hat trick.

Charlton had 57 per cent of the possession, but had only four shots in target compared to 16 for the home side. Indeed, Elliot in goal made some good saves. Charlton had 10 shots off target to just six for the home side which says something about the gap in quality.

Charlton were managed for the cup game by Keith Peacock following the shock sacking of Jimmy Seed. [Shome mishtake shurely, ed?]

The Addicks showed fighting spirit throughout the game and those Charlton fans who ventured north of the river will not feel let down. Now they can await the announcement of the appointment of a new manager and the revival of their promotion challenge.

Curbs for Ispwich?

Alan Curbishley is a favourite for the Ipswich job, although he will probably be pipped to the post by Paul Jewell. In any case it's quite a long way north of the M25 for Curbs.

The commentator on Radio 5 this morning said, 'He can't go to Ipswich. We need him at Villa.' He is a former Villa player, but that's past the Watford Gap.

Curbs has now been out of management for some time. He is certainly not short of a bob or two, but if he doesn't accept a job soon, he may be out of management for ever.

For now you can take him on in a soccer predictions game in the Daily Mirror: Curbs

Steve Brown on Charlton

This long piece on the 'demise' of Charlton includes long quotations from Steve Brown who is broadly supportive of the new regime: Brown

Stevie Brown, he'll never let you down. I got a bit irritated by his references to Brighton as 'we' on recent match commentaries, but his connections with both the town and the club are long-standing.

I would certainly be happy to see him have a support role at Charlton and the same goes for Chris Powell.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

Pardew enhances his c.v.

Alan Pardew gained something to add to his c.v. after Newcastle went down 3-1 to Stevenage in the FA Cup this evening. Apparently Newcastle are only the third team to lose to fourth tier opposition since the formation of the Premiership. That's the quality you get with a five-and-a-half year contract. The Silver Fox weaves his magic!

Charlton in for Howe

The BBC (or more specifically Radio Solent) are claiming that Charlton are in a race with Crystal Palace for the services of Eddie Howe as manager: Howe

I have no means of assessing how valid these reports are, but rumours about Chris Hughton persist. Howe is a young manager and has done a good job at Bournemouth but it is doubtful whether they can be taken much further. He also fits the demand from some fans for a young manager.

I don't think Dennis Wise is out of the frame.

Odds against Charlton

Charlton are 11-1 to win and 5-1 to draw at White Hart Lane tomorrow.

The last time we played Tottenham away was in the Premier League on Saturday December 9 2006. Tottenham won 5:1 and Charlton's goal was an own goal by

The Charlton team for that match was:-
Carson, Young, Diawara, El Karkouri, Hreidarsson, Sam, Kishishev (Rommedahl 53), Faye, Hughes, Reid (Hasselbaink 67), Darren Bent.
Subs Not Used: Myhre, Holland, Fortune.

Previously v Tottenham away (Premier league)

1998/99 Tottenham 2 Charlton 2
2000/01 Tottenham 0 Charlton 0
2001/02 Tottenham 0 Charlton 1
2002/03 Tottenham 2 Charlton 2
2003/04 Tottenham 0 Charlton 1
2004/05 Tottenham 2 Charlton 3
2005/06 Tottenham 3 Charlton 1
2006/07 Tottenham 5 Charlton 1

Previously v Tottenham (FA Cup)

1960/61 Tottenham 3 Charlton 2
1984/85 Tottenham 1 Charlton 1
1984/85 Charlton 1 Tottenham 2
2000/01 Charlton 2 Tottenham 4

Stats from Chalfont St.Peter Addick Dick Sheppard.

Friday, 7 January 2011

Charlton owners 'mystery'

The following item appeared in The Guardian this morning:

'Charlton Athletic fans are wondering whether Kevin Cash, a super-wealthy property developer, has funded the club's recent takeover [we had this story earlier in the week].

The Addicks' newly installed chairman, Michael Slater, is an 11% shareholder and the chairman of Reflex Vehicle Solutions, a car-rental firm of which Cash's Rose Property Holdings owns pretty much all of the remaining 89%. Charlton are obliged under Football League rules to announce all backers who own more than 10% of the club, and they have declared only Slater and Tony Jimenez as the major shareholders. A spokesman for the pair confirmed yesterday: "The majority owners of the club are Tony and Michael; there are several minority shareholders who each have less than 10%in the holding company."

There is obviously no reason to disbelieve the spokesman but neither is there any way of independently checking – not even for the Football League. As revealed here on Tuesday, Charlton's parent company, CAFC Holdings, is registered in the British Virgin Islands, where shareholders and directors need not be disclosed.'

Am I bothered? Not really. The fact that the company is registered in the British Virgin Islands suggests that there might be some serious money involved. Welcome to the 21st century.

The genuis that is Lawro

Lawro has predicted that Spurs will beat Charlton in Sunday's FA Cup game. What a genius! I wish I could get paid for stating the obvious.

Apart from passing 'go' and collecting £250k, and the chance to pay a tribute to Charlton legend Keith Peacock, this is all about damage limitation. Hints by our 'Arry earlier in the week that David Beckham might play now seem unlikely to be realised. It is also possible that 'Arry may rest key players, or at least keep them on the bench, which would help to keep the scoreline down to a respectable level: Day off

We have a defence that can't defend, particularly at set pieces; a midfield that seems incapable of linking up with either the defence or the attack; one so-called striker is suspended and another is injured. It's just possible that the bombardment of long balls will confuse Spurs, someone will bring a Charlton player down in the box and Jackson will score from the spot.

I am going for 4-1 to Spurs (Jackson for the Addicks).

BTW, this map of football support in London is interesting as a talking point: Map

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Wise decision?

Several media outlets are reporting that Dennis Wise is to be the next manager of Charlton while Chelsea blogs are discussing it. Presumably no decision will be announced until after the ritual sacrifice of Keith Peacock on the altar of White Hart Lane.

For a sceptical view see: Wisdom

The author of a 'A Taxi Driver Writes' column in Private Eye may also have something to say.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Charlton manager odds

Here are the latest odds: Odds

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink anyone? We'd end up with players who couldn't turn faster than an oil tanker. We might as well go for Jonathan Acworth.

Glen Hoddle has shortened to 6/1 in the latest booking, but I don't see that given the effort he has put into his operation in Spain.

TalkSport is bigging up Chris Hughton. That would show real ambition and is just possible because of the Newcastle connection.

Why the board made the right decision

Phil Parkinson inherited a difficult hand from Alan Pardew. He has had very little money to play with, although arguably the cash signings he made were not good enough. His performance was not disastrous, but it was not good enough for a team that wanted to return to the Championship. At best we would have got another play off place this season.

I know there are those who argue that he should have been given a chance to see what he could do with some money and that's a reasonable view to take. But I'm not sure it's a luxury we can afford. We need to re-build the crowds as the new owners have made clear.

Parkinson is a decent and approachable man. I am sure that there will be another management job for him in football before very long. Thanks, Phil, for all you tried to do.

For me the tipping point was the Swindon match. I have never believed in reading results off the table, particularly in such a fluid division and any team can have a freak bad result at home. After we went down 1-6 at home to Leeds, fans did the conga and no one called for Curbishley to go (other than the Bloke Behind Me).

The decision-making against Swindon was poor: the wrong formation to start with (indeed it wasn't even quite clear what the formation was) and a poor decision to take off Fortune. What struck me above all listening to the commentary was the negativity of the crowd and how quickly they turned on the team. The Parky issue was becoming a drag on the club and any new manager will be given some time to sort things out before the moaning starts again.

Whoever the new manager is, there has to be some spending. Part of the problem is mediocre players or players who are now starting to deteriorate: would Dailly have made the mistake he did against Swindon last season? We badly need a new central defender and it would be nice to have a reliable striker who can find the back of the net. Austin comes to mind.

In an ideal world I would like local lad Chris Hughton as the new manager. But that isn't going to happen. As for Dennis Wise, on whom the bookies stopped taking bets last night, I remember seeing him come on as a sub when we were playing at Chelsea (I was privileged to be next to the Rickster that day) and I shouted 'Taxi!' to salute the taxi drivers' friend.

I don't think Wise is very 'Charlton' and I'm not even sure that he's a good manager (there was an element of luck in getting Millwall to the FA cup final), although I think he's better than Gareth Southgate or that Welsh windbag Chris Coleman. However, at the end of the day he would be judged by results. If he got us promoted, all would be forgiven.

Incidentally, I don't take the talk about Poyet seriously. It would cost a lot to buy him out of his contract, money better spent on players, and why should he leave a team that looks very likely to be promoted and will have a new stadium to play in next season?

The board has shown that it can be decisive and that is what is needed. Arguably we had become a bit too nice. At the end of the day I do not support the board or a particular manager (even though I regard the eras of Jimmy Seed and Alan Curbishley as golden ones). I support the club and my hope is that confidence will now be restored among the fans and the teams and we can move forward.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Parky sacked

Reports are circulating that Phil Parkinson has been sacked: Parky These have now been confirmed by the official club site.

All the backroom staff have gone (it is best to have a clean out in these circumstances). The name of Dennis Wise has been widely mentioned as a possible replacement. Onw would hope that the new owners have someone in mind as we don't want a repeat of the post-Curbishley fiasco which did lasting damage to the club.

Dennis Wise is favourite with the bookies st 2-1; Gareth Southgate and Chris Coleman are both 6-1; Iain Dowie and Kevin Blackwell are 8-1; and Alan Curbishley is 16-1 (Curbs would never come back in my view and I don't think it would be right for him and the club.

Let's hope that any new manager has sufficient funds to replace some of the mediocre players. They are a good part of the problem. However, poor decision-making was evident last night in the initial formation and the substitutions. The new owners want to see the club in the Championship, as all fans do, and they feel that a fresh start is the best way to achieve that. They have been prepared to act decisively.

Keith Peacock has been appointed temporary manager which should steady the ship with Damian Matthews as his assistant.

The King is dead. Long live the King!

Monday, 3 January 2011

Parky to meet owners after 2-4 defeat

Swindon had an early corner cleared by Fortune and the follow up corner was cleared by Francis. Charlton made some good efforts in the opening phase, reports Philippa Nicholson. Swindon were playing a 4-5-1 formation while Benson was up front for the Addicks. Reid put in a good early cross which Benson connected with well.

However, then Swindon came into the game more, but there was no one to connect with a Swindon cross. Charlton were trying to pass and play, but Swindon were also probing.

Martin approached on the right, but the offside flag went up. McCormack tried to advance, but Swindon came away with ball and won a thrown in level with the Charlton penalty area. Elliot saved well with his foot. The first quarter of an hour was evenly balanced with both sides trying to get on top of the midfield battle.

O’Brien got in behind Francis who had to concede a corner. Morrison had a free header but did not get enough on it. A header from Austin went wide. Racon fed Reid who put in a dangerous cross and Jackson’s follow up deflected off a Swindon player to put the Addicks 1-0 ahead. The Swindon players were furious claiming a hand ball from Benson in the build up. It was a hand ball, but sometimes the luck goes your way. The new chairman punched the air.

Reid kept skidding over which raised questions about the studs on his designer boots. Jackson made a good run, but it was unproductive. Racon advanced on the right, but Swindon were able to clear their lines. Reid got past two players but was body checked by Morrison leaving both players down. Reid was given a yellow card.

Fortune had to head out a Swindon free kick. Dailly fed Martin who tried to use his pace, the move ending in a Charlton throw in. Swindon counter attacked, but the Addicks got their players back. A dangerous ball from Ritchie was dealt with by Jackson.

The referee missed another hand ball. Charlton attacked again on the right but Smith in the Swindon goal was able to claim the ball. A quickly taken free kick led to a shot by Ritchie which Elliot palmed over the goal. The corner led to a second one, but McCormack was able to take the ball away.

Rose advanced 60 yards with the ball at his feet but Austin was not able to convert nor could Prutton get on the end of it. That was Swindon’s best chance to equalise up to then.

Charlton were pushed back too deep, Elliot dealt with the cross from the left but then the rebound fell to Pompey loanee Ritchie who was able to put the ball in the back of the net from four yards out to make it 1-1 in front of the Swindon fans in the Jimmy Seed.

Swindon took a corner short. Semedo cut it out and Martin almost got a touch whose pressure led to a Charlton corner. It was well worked and Benson got into space but Smith gathered well low down.

Half time: Addicks 1, Robins 1

Austin sent a shot in but it was straight to Elliot. Charlton broke away but McCormack was not able to take advantage. Martin flicked the ball off Rose to win a corner. The corner by Francis was headed away.

Francis gave a terrible ball away leading to groans from the Addickted. Racon almost got round the defender and keeper but ex Spanner Smith dived on the ball. Dailly defended poorly on the edge of the box, Austin stole in and put the ball in the back of the net to make it 1-2 leaving Elliot with no chance. It was a late seasonal present for the former non-league striker.

O’Brien beat Francis who was exposed by his opponent’s pace but fortunately Elliot was able to gather off Austin. Charlton made a double substitution with Martin and McCormack going off and Abbott and Wagstaff coming on.

Prutton put in an effort from 25 yards out as the gaps opened up. Wagstaff showed a nice touch and Benson attempted to get a shot away but Frampton was able to block. Ritchie advanced but his shot deflected off Dailly for a throw in.
O’Brien was taken off and replaced by McGovern. Swindon were packing their own half, while Charlton were relying on the long ball. There was not enough movement from the Charlton players. The frustration of the Addickted was growing.

Charlton won a corner but it was headed away by Morison. Reid fed the ball back in, but Abbott was too close to the keeper. Charlton made their final substitution with Sodje coming on in place of Fortune. The Addicks seemed to be gambling on three at the back, but with Semedo in front of Dailly. It was a desperate gamble and so it proved.

Abbott gave the ball away and Swindon broke but the flag was raised against Austin. Charlton advanced but Abbott was not able to get a shot away. Cuthbert came on in place of Timlin.

The free kick came in and the 6ft 4 ins. Morison put in a towering header to make it 3-1 - straight past Elliot into the corner. The Addickted start to stream out of the ground. I felt tempted to join them, but duty called.

Swindon won another corner. It became a rout as Austin came in at the back post to make it 4-1. There was a chance at the other end but Benson was not able to take advantage. Reid got a cross in and won a corner. Benson’s header was wide. A volley from Sodje was cleared off the line. Desailly replaced Austin who applauded the away fans whilst no doubt thinking of his future in the Championship.

A corner from Francis was headed away. A great finish by Abbott who turned and put in a super volley over the keeper that saw the ball go into the right-hand corner to make it 2-4.

A corner from Francis was headed out by Cuthbert. Jackson hammered the ball into the visiting fans.

Phil Parkinson was to meet the new owners after the game. That will be an interesting conversation. Whoever is manager they need to be given money for new players, especially in central defence.

The surge starts here says Swindon supremo

Swindon supremeo Danny Wilson reckons that his club's surge towards promotion will start at The Valley today. He is drawing inspiration from last year's late surge up the table.

'We're not where we want to be,' he admitted. 'But if you look at the position we were in this time last year, it's virtually identical. But we went on a great run just after the new year. If that's what we do again this season, nobody will care about the poor start.'

Wilson admitted that the Rocking Robins are a selling club. The club lost Simon Cox to the Baggies and Billy Paynter to Leeds. Now Charlie Austin, who joined from non-league Poole Town in 2009, is attracting attention from a number of Championship clubs.

If Swindon are to break the cycle of selling their best players, Wilson says that promotion to the Championship is a must for a club that is undisputed No.1 in Wiltshire. Having taking a turn round the magic roundabout, Wilson admited, 'We're never going to be blessed with 30,000 fans - we're quite realistic about that. But we could quite easily fill the stadium we've got if things go well.'

We beat Swindon 3-0 away earlier in the season, but that was not in front of the tetchy Valley crowd. This could be another draw and I will go for 2-2.

Philippa Nicholson at last gets a chance to wear her new outfit and will be covering the game as I try to catch up the work I should have done over the holiday.

Dowie steps forward

Iain Dowie reckons he must be in the frame for the vacant managerial posts at Burnley and Preston. He commented, 'You're always interested in clubs of the magnitude of Burnley and Preston.'

Would they be interested in him? Well nothing amazes me in the world of football. In any other walk of life such a track record of falure would disqualify you from even getting on the short list.

Mind you, he might suit Preston. He is a proven relegation specialist.

To top it all, I have just heard on Radio 5 that Alan Pardew thinks that David Beckham should go to Newcastle because a quality player needs a quality manager. Ego or what?

Which of them is more up himself? Dowie or Pardew?

Is it all about Cash?

Speculation is increasing that elusive millionaire Kevin Cash may be in the background of the Charlton takeover and may even have partially funded the deal. I am indebted to another Addick for some research has undertaken.

TLS Vehicle rentals was to be taken over by a company called Reflex Vehicle Solutions, whose Chairman is none other than Michael Slater the new chairman of Charlton.

A search at Companies House revealed that Reflex were owned by a company called HDSL Nominees Limited which in turn was owned by the Rose Property Corporation registered in the British Virgin Islands. Further digging came up with the very appropriate name of 'Kevin Cash' who is the owner of the 'Rose Property Corporation'. Kevin Cash who is reported to be worth around £500 million.

An article in the Daily Mail said of Cash:-
His name is Kevin Cash, an elusive figure about whom little is known, but who is said to be hugely significant on the London property scene, as well as a major player in the trade of Gulf oil.

Cash is reputed to be worth about £500 million and his substantial property portfolio includes half of an exclusive row of mews houses close to the Dorchester Hotel in Mayfair, homes in Marbella and Miami and a £16million country estate, North Aston Hall, in Bicester, Oxfordshire. Yet he has never been included on any rich list.

He is involved with a company set up to manage property portfolios for Premiership football stars, including the controversial Chelsea defender John Terry.

‘Cash is probably one of the most powerful people in London today,’ says a source. ‘He handles money for many super-rich businessmen and has managed to
make himself more than any of them.’

Despite his enormous wealth, Cash does not appear to have any British-registered companies, but has based his business empire offshore. Rose Properties – which owns his impressive Oxfordshire estate – is registered in the Virgin Islands, where it is neither necessary to file accounts nor name directors. [Ends]

I have no evidence that Cash is actually involved in the Charlton takeover, but it is interesting to speculate that there may be links between him and Slater and possibly Jiminez as well.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Does Cash have the cash?

I think that Kevin Cash may be the man with the cash as far as Charlton is concerned. An Addick has been researching this and I hope to publish the full story tomorrow (right now I am off to ice hockey). If he is involved, he is seriously wealthy.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Benson sent off in 3-3 draw

There are no great surprises in the Charlton line up at Colchester, reports Erith Addick Paul May. The injured Anyinsah (spine) is replaced by Martin and Sodje returns to the bench. Indeed, the biggest change is in our commentary team where I am joined by Hans-Peter Knoeofel aus Schweiz mit die Ubersicht.

Colchester manager John Ward told Radio Essex that Charlton had a very strong bench and complained 'We're up against some very strong clubs, some very wealthy clubs.'

The advancing Martin was cynically pulled back by Reid who might have got a yellow card. Elliot asked for the ball to be changed. The game started quietly with neither side dominating. Then Mooney put in a shot after Doherty did not read the flight of the ball well but Elliot saved. Fry made a poor clearance, but the U’s were not able to take advantage of the opportunity.

Doherty made a poor header and Elliot had to sprint to deny Mooney. Elliot went down with what appeared to be a turned ankle, although his left knee might also have been troubling him. He pulled up awkwardly after the clearance. Colchester advanced and Semedo put in great work to clear in the area. Racon put in a shot on target, but it was an easy save for Williams.

A free kick 30 yards out was awarded against Semedo as concerns about Elliot continued. Wordsworth curled the ball round the wall and Elliot made a fantastic save to his left at the expense of a corner. Lloyd James ran in and Heath put in a near post header to put Colchester 1-0 ahead.

Martin was challenged in the area and a penalty, which some referees would not have given, was awarded. Top scorer Jackson put the ball straight into the corner to equalise. Doherty appeared to foul Mooney, but the former Addick was given a yellow card for diving. Ross Worner was sitting down again.

A cross put in Martin was turned away by Reid for a corner. Reid headed the corner away and Mooney advanced. Francis put in a good tackle leading to a Charlton throw. Colchester advanced on the right and went 2-1 ahead through Andy Bond. The marking at the back by Charlton was slack. Elliot dived to his right and went down on the ground. The stretcher was called for, but Elliot got up again. Francis appeared to have a head injury.

Francis had to put the ball away for a corner to prevent a clear shot on goal. Semedo cleared, but the U’s re-gained possession and Doherty put the ball out for a corner. Elliot punched the ball out, Vincent had two attempts and the ball went over the crossbar for a goal kick.

Colchester advanced again, Vincent’s first touch was too strong and Dailly put the ball away for a corner which was taken short. Bond put in a volley but Elliot made a great save. Charlton were under the cosh.

Dailly went in late on Vincent and received a yellow card. Wordsworth swung in the ball towards the far post but it went out of play. Martin put in a decent cross, but the resultant throw by Francis was poor. A cross by Francis led to a corner.

A great header from Benson went in, there was a deliberate handball from Perkins on the goal line and he was sent off. This time Jackson put it in the opposite corner to last time to make it 2-2 and put his league tally up to ten.

Charlton were playing better possession football. Six minutes were added on. Benson had a golden chance with a free header after a great cross by Jackson but his effort had no power behind it. Francis was brought down by Wordsworth who was lucky not to be booked.

Hans-Peter: Der Torwat ist tapfer. I am worried about the quality of the defending from set pieces.

Half-time: U's 2, Addicks 2

The U’s made a bright start to the second half. After some neat passing by Charlton, a drive was blocked. Charlton started to dominate possession. Francis made a poor pass which went to the keeper. Martin got a shot away from the edge of the D despite the attentions of three defenders.

Parky made a double substitution after a quiet spell in the match. Racon was replaced by Abbott in an attacking change and Reid replaced Wagstaff who had not been very involved. Jackson went into a more central midfield position with Martin on the right.

The U’s won a corner off Lee Martin. James put in a shot but Elliot saved. The U’s broke down the right (a problem for Charlton all afternoon), there were appeals for a free kick as Doherty was having his shirt tugged and they scored from the left of the area through Wordsworth to go 3-2 ahead. Mooney got a shot away which went just past the post with Elliot nowhere near it.

Jackson put in a cross, but it was headed away. Elliot sliced a clearance after Fry passed the ball back to him. The keeper did not look completely comfortable. However, he dealt well with a cross from Vincent. Charlton applied some pressure. Martin put in a good cross with Benson stealing in but Williams claimed well.

Good movement by Reid led to a Charlton corner. Williams punched it out, Fry missed out it and the U’s counter attacked, Mooney went for glory with options to his left and right and he put the ball over the bar. Abbott advanced but suffered from a very marginal offside decision.

Paul Benson scored a spectacular goal with an overhead volley to make it 3-3. Colchester made a double substitution taking off Vincent who was replaced by Henderson. Mooney went off and was replaced by Odejayi. These were like-for-like replacements to deal with tired legs.

Elliot caught the ball well. Martin put in a good cross towards the far post and it was headed behind for a corner. Fry tackled well to deny the U’s as they broke.
Dailly fed Reid and Benson put the ball in the net, but the referee gave a free kick. Colchester were backs to the wall, but they were given a generous free kick. The U’s were given a free kick on the edge of the area. Wordsworth’s effort went over the crossbar, Elliot judging it well not to concede the corner.

Benson was late in a challenge on White and was shown red. Five minutes were added on. News came through that George Burley had been dismissed by the Glaziers after their defeat by the Spanners.

The Addicks conceded a corner after a free kick: it was a dubious decision and Parky was not happy. Heath had a free header but Elliot made the save. Charlton counter attacked. The U’s advanced and Elliot had to kick a back pass away. Reid wasted an opportunity. The U’s applied more pressure, but Charlton countered.

The Addicks had not won away on New Year’s Day since 1953 and the chance to go second was missed.

Die Ubersicht: Hans Peter has awarded the box of chocolates to Elliot for a fighting performance. He was concerned about the way in which the U's could advance on the right and wonders how good Herr Braten from West Ham is. There are also defensive worries at set pieces, but the fighting spirit was good.

The rumour mill

Rumours are circulating that Preston North End are interested in Phil Parkinson. It would be an odd move to a club mired in a relegation struggle with Sir Alex Ferguson having recalled his loan players in a fit of temper at his son's dismissal.

In praise of the Academy

An interesting and well illustrated aricle: Academy

Paul May will be joined at Colchester this afternoon by match summariser Hans-Peter Knoepfel from Lausanne, Switzerland.

We can also reveal that an exclusive range of Charlton themed cuckoo clocks will soon be available in the club shop.