Friday, 22 February 2013

Can we cut down Forest?

I have to say that I took particular enjoyment in the win over Leicester, in part because it was unexpected, in part through taking a perhaps rather unfair pleasure in the discomfiture of a friend who is a rabid Fox. When they equalised, she thought the three points were theirs, as did many Addicks who were predicting that it would be 2-1 in a minute which it was: just in the other direction. With the final whistle, she blamed Richard III and went in search of a consoling glass of wine to find that she had run out.

Now we have a home game and Forest have won as many matches away as we have lost which does not bode well. They beat Huddersfield 6-1 in the week, although that may say as much about Huddersfield as it does about Forest. However, they are also something of away draw specialists, a draw being the most common outcome for them for an away game (seven in all). So a draw does look like a possible outcome and at the moment I would take it.

Billy Davies is partly to blame for Charlton suffering the curse of Dowie. I recall Richard Murray recalling at a bloggers' meeting how long and apparently fruitful talks had been held with Davies at The Valley after Curbs left. Davies was booked into a room at the Swallow Hotel, but he never used it, instead heading north through the Blackwell Tunnel. Quite why has never been clear.

4-5-1, or on Tuesday 4-1-4-1, seems to work well for us. The question remains whether we have enough quality in the midfield to make 4-4-2 work by giving good service to the strikers. Too often the midfield seems to go awol or lose its shape. Stephens does show flashes of real quality, but then his next ball often goes straight to an opposition player. We miss Jackson when he isn't there, but he doesn't have the pace these days to be a game changer, other than from a set piece. Pritchard and Wagstaff epitomise honest endeavour. Topping my shopping list for the summer would be a creative playmaker in midfield.

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