Up to now there has been little sign of the club being willing to engage with the CAS Trust in a serious dialogue on strategic issues. However, the Trust leadership thinks there is now a glimmer of hope: How to cope with disarray?
Many people are critical of CAS Trust, but it is the only representative structure we really have for fans. Admittedly, some fans would not want any kind of representative structure, while others would want one more committed to direct action.
The Trust faces a real dilemma. Should it attempt to pursue constructive dialogue with Roland's representative on Earth? Or should it back various forms of protest? Of course, it's not entirely an 'either or' choice. However, the worst outcome would be various forms of uncoordinated protest which made very little impact. I am also sceptical about how far Roland, as an elitist visionary, is susceptible to the views of the lower orders.
However, he is a businessman and presumably he wants his project at Charlton to succeed, although one of the difficulties we face is uncertainty about what that project really is, or whether it takes enough account of local conditions.
The Sunday Times magazine had an interesting article about London yesterday in which it said that since the 1980s, 'the capital's centre of gravity has been shifting ever eastwards' and it names Woolwich as a 'go to' location when for years it was a 'get away from' place. Hong Kong-born Sammy Lee is spending £5bn on the Greenwich peninsula. What about buying a nearby football club?
There is a strategic opportunity here. As it is, the incomers interested in football are likely to forsake the unfashionable club nearby for one of the glamorous Central London teams, or perhaps they will be tempted by a short trip on the Jubilee Line to West Ham from next season? However, it would not be impossible for Charlton to take at least a slice of this growth, but the offer has to be tempting, i.e., a club with ambitions to push for the Premiership. And time is running out.