My Number 1 objective for me today is to get to The Valley for tonight's match after getting no further than Marylebone last Wednesday and having to turn back. I will be leaving earlier than usual and I am fired up for a win.
Let's just focus on the football and leave to one side the discussions that have been going on. Is Roland the devil incarnate, a mad professor, a mild eccentric, a man with interesting ideas, a true visionary? Time will tell.
The return of Jonathan Obika has given morale a boost. He didn't find the net that much, but his pace carved a path through opposition defences. However, like all the forwards, he has suffered from a lack of good service. We really need a good winger. There have been rumours that one is about to arrive and I live in hope.
Russian-owned Bournemouth are 12th in the table, but 6th in the form table and may fancy a late run to at least approach the play offs. They have a good record away from home with five wins, five draws and seven defeats. They seem a bit defensively suspect as they have scored 44 goals but conceded 52. We have conceded fewer goals, 41, but we have only scored 24, the worst record in the league and probably in all leagues. Whether we have the firepower to unlock the Cherries is the big question for tonight.
Former Addick Simon Francis (remember him?) grumbles about his treatment at The Valley and stirs the pot by arguing that his 'contacts' suggest that the club is in a shambles and the game comes at a good time for the Cherries: Cherry ripe
I fear another draw, but I am trying to be optimistic and I am going for Belgium 2, Russia 1.
Odds are: Charlton 7/4, Draw 23/10, Bournemouth 6/4. Referee James Linington will be making use of the most expensive ferry per mile in the world to come from his home in Newport, Isle of Wight via Cowes and Southampton to reach The Valley. Cherries fans on the island are no doubt reassured by his presence, although far more people support Pompey or the Saints. There are also quite a few Addicks fans who have retired there.