Sunday 31 May 2009

A blank big screen?

There are concerns that the 'big screen' at The Valley may have to go blank next season if a sponsor cannot be found. Here's a suggestion. After they lost their sponsor, the Northern League raffled sponsorship at £250 a ticket. The winning business has now become the permanent sponsor.

Such an idea might appeal to smaller businesses and even better off fans. Just a thought.

Saturday 30 May 2009

Cadzy's transatlantic swoop

Leamington supremo Jason Cadden is not letting the grass grow under his feet as he prepares for the team's Southern Premiership campaign. His latest move is an auadcious transatlantic swoop to sign highly rated striker Nicky Gordon. The one downside is that the player will not be able to join the Brakes until October because of his playing and coaching commitments in the States.

Leamington's defence probably needs more strengthening than other parts of the side and Cadzy has signed former Villa academy full back Chris Tuohy. After leaving Villa, he played for Tamworth and Solihull Moors.

There is less action at The Valley, as the future ownership of the team remains to be decided and along with it the fate of manager Phil Parkinson. However, he has expressed an interest in retaining the services of Darren Ward who he thinks is a good influence on younger players.

Thursday 28 May 2009

Small signing for Addicks?

Charlton have been linked with Wade Small after his release by Sheffield Wednesday.

Read the Owls profile of the versatile midfielder here: Small

Tuesday 26 May 2009

Dowie hits pay dirt

When Iain Dowie was seen driving Alan Shearer into Newcastle's training ground yesterday it look as if he had finally found his level - as the manager's driver.

However, it appears that the wonder worker will be part of Shearer's new four year deal at St.James's Park, and what is more his brother, Bob Dowie, will be brought into to strengthen the set up and enjoy the occasional shandy with his brother.

A source close to the Barcodes commented, 'Now that we are a Championship side we can benefit from Iain Dowie's experience at that level. There are few people around who have taken three Championship clubs to a higher level.'

Sunday 24 May 2009

Dowie does it again

If you want to put your team in the frame for relegation, bring in Iain Dowie. Barcode fans thought that their messiah Alan Shearer would save them from relegation, but they had reckoned without the Geordie god's master stroke in bringing in Dowie as coach.

Charlton will be playing the Spanners next year after Millwall failed in their audacious bid to make the Toolbox a Championship venue. In fact there will be three other London area teams in League 1 apart from the South-East London rivals: the Gills, Orient and Brentford.

Fight on for Lloyd Sam?

Wigan Athletic and Stoke City are reported to be the latest clubs interested in signing Lloyd Sam, while Newcastle United are maintaining their interest. Of course, the Barcodes may be a Championship club by the end of the day owing to the curse of Dowie.

I don't find it very credible, though. Somewhat more credible, and more worrying, is a reported interest by Watford in Nicky Bailey.

Saturday 23 May 2009


The Spanners crowd at Wembley will be made up as follows:
1. 4,000 by train
2. 2,000 in a stolen vehicle
3. 600 in coaches organised by HM Prison Service
4. 40,000 on bandwagon

Friday 22 May 2009

Carry on Sarge!

With 48 goals to his credit in the season just finished, Mark Bellingham has agreed to stay on for Leamington's campaign in the Southern Premiership. A sergeant with the West Midlands Police, Bello has said that the Brakes should not just settle for consolidation, but should challenge for promotion. However, Bello is unlikely to score the 61 goals he managed in his best season as a striker.

Brakes are also poised to swoop for Stourbridge attacking midfielder Leon Broadhurst. He was the Glassboys' top scorer last season. However, Brakes still need to strengthen their defence which was probably their greatest weakness last season when they were defeated in five matches.

Which team will finish highest in their table: Leamington or Charlton?

Thursday 21 May 2009

Let us honour famous men

With Newcastle United plunging towards relegation, now is surely the time to honour coach Iain Dowie as The Times does today. Read about his unique coaching methods which have brought success to clubs such as Charlton Athletic, Coventry City and Queen's Park Rangers. Rocket Science

Friday 15 May 2009

Interest in Lloyd Sam

Reading, Crystal Palace and Newcastle United are clubs said to have expressed an interest in Lloyd Sam. The latter seems unbelievable, given that at best he is a good Championship player, but then the Barcodes did bring in Dowie as coach so I suppose anything is possible.

For me, Sam is an enigma wrapped in a mystery. When he is good, he can be very good. But in the same match he can be shocking. On balance I would keep him. I wouldn't turn down a good offer, but I can't believe it would be all that good.

Thursday 14 May 2009

Charlton matters

Both Alan Pardew and Alan Curbishley have been linked with the vacant managerial vacancy at Reading. Steve Coppell for Charlton anyone?

Tomorrow I have to go a meeting at Charlton House in Charlton Road in Shepton Mallet in Somerset.

Sunday 10 May 2009

It all goes off at the New Den

I suppose the suprising thing would be if it hadn't: Spanners

Saturday 9 May 2009

There's only one Deano

Dean Kiely presented the awards at Leamington Football Club's presentation evening last night. His son Chris was the club's stand in goalkeeper in the latter part of the season, on loan from Gillingham. I understand that Chris has now been let go by the Gills and will be returning to the Midlands. However, Mozza, now back from injury, will be resuming his place in the Brakes goal.

As expected, the supporters' player of the year award went to super striker Mark Bellingham. he scored 46 goals this season which is a remarkable record at any level of football and they included some very good ones. Let's hope we can keep him next year. Bello won a number of other awards including two boxes of chocolates in the raffle.

Afterwards I was able to shake Deano by the hand and thank him once again for all his years of service to Charlton.

Some jobs saved

A number of staff left the Addicks this week following confirmation that a series of roles have been made redundant. The club announced last month that as many as 25 club officials could leave the club's two sites in Charlton and New Eltham due to a number of cuts and cost-cutting measures.

However, a number of roles have also been saved during a month-long consultation period, with some staff no longer at risk of redundancy. Charlton chief executive Steve Waggott said: 'It's been a very difficult month behind the scenes, with a lot of unpleasant decisions having to be made.'

Unfortunately it is often those with not particularly well paid non-pitch roles who have given years of dedicated service to the club who are vulnerable in these circumstances.

Monday 4 May 2009

Bent sell on pay off

Those who know me will know this is not a picture of me but of our president who is also called Olfaur and is a distant relative

Hello, it's your old pal Olafur who will be looking after the blog while Wyn Grant becomes a temporary civil servant and commutes to London. As you know, things here in Iceland are as bad as at my old club. However, people still like to eat our fish, so things are not so bad here in Grindavik.

Some of you will have heard that the promotion of Birmingham City to the Premiership will mean a bonus payment for the Addicks in respect of Mr Marcus Bent. Unfortunately, Mr Bent has recently lost his lady friend and here she explains how she compensates for the lack of exercise between the sheets (which might explain Mr Bent's occasional indolence on the pitch): Gemma

While I was waiting for the boat to come in, I also came across an article on Deptford and New Cross as a tourist attraction, but strangely there is no mention of the Millwall club which would certainly be an edgy urban experience. Read more here:

Sunday 3 May 2009

Stand Up If You're Going Down

That was the chant sung by Norwich and Charlton supporters as this match drew to a close with Charlton winning 4-2 in front of a notional attendance of 22,020. Charlton looked by far the stronger side, but conceded a couple of soft goals as they so often have this season.

The Addicks were three up in thirty minutes. Bailey headed in a Sam cross on 9 minutes. Disaster struck shortly afterwards when Youga and Ward went down in a clash in front of goal with Canaries man mountain and captain Gary Doherty. Youga got up, but Ward had to be stretchered off to chants of his name and youngster Chris Solly came on. He showed plenty of confidence, anticipating moves and telling his team mates what to do.

On 25 minutes a rebound from a Lloyd Sam effort gave Burton a simple tap in. Five minutes later he made use of a cross from Bailey to put the Addicks 3-0. The deflated visiting supporters started up a chant of 'You're not fit not to wear the shirt' directed at their team.

Norwich pulled off Adrian Leijer and brought on Cody McDonald. Solly won a corner for Charlton. Four minutes of time were added on and Norwich won a corner just as the additional time was up. I said to Steve from Croydon that this might be when we conceded a goal and so it proved to be with Lee heading into the net past the stranded Elliot.

Half time: Addicks 3, Canaries 1

Elliot had to make a good save early in the half, but then, before the margin could be narrowed, Burton made it 4-1. Elliot had to make another good save. A Norwich corner drew a great save from the custodian.

Norwich were awarded a free kick in front of the 'D'. It was very well taken by Clingan who left Elliot with no chance to make it 4-2. An Addicks free kick led to a corner and a shot from Hudson went just over the bar.

Bailey gave Norwich a free kick just on the edge of the box. It was taken quickly before the referee was ready and slammed into the net, Lappin receiving a yellow card. Taken again, it went just wide of Elliot's post.

Zheng Zhi was taken off and Scott Wagstaff took his place. A Canaries corner entered a thicket of players in front of the goal, but somehow it was cleared. The ball went out of play at the Covered End and Shelvey dribbled it away from charm merchant Shackell. Just as the referee was about to have a word with Shelvey, Shackell came past and pushed him and received a yellow card for his troubles.

Lloyd Sam was taken off and replaced by Tamer Tuna. Butterfield sprang into action to clear the ball off the line. Elliot made a great save at the cost of a Norwich corner.

Shelvey had a chance to score, but hit the crosssbar. Tuna put in a great cross. Five minutes were added on, but although both sides won a couple of corners, the scoreline remained unchanged. The players received a generous ovation from the crowd.

It was good to see the Blackheath Addick at the station afterwards.

After the match, Phil Parkinson said. 'If I'm not here next season I'll walk away with my head held high. The club has had a lot of instability. If the board, or any new owners, want to start again I think that will be a big risk.'

Match analysis

Ivy the Terrible awarded the Silver Bone to Chris Solly who came on as a substitute and delivered a bravura performance, starting some good attacking moves. Elliot made some superb saves, particularly in the second half. Hudson made some of his trademark defensive headers, although it would be interesting to study the video to see his positioning for the two goals. It was a shame that Darren Ward had to end his loan spell at Charlton on a stretcher. Kelly Youga's dad was a basketball star in Africa, and his mum and other family members played the game and one sometimes wonders if that is his natural sport. Certainly my heart sank when he had to switch to centre half, but in general it has to be said that he did what was asked of him. Butterfield was generally reliable and competent. Bailey is a class act and his baker's dozen goal was excellent, but I wish he would not give away free kicks in dangerous positions. Racon was less prominent than he sometimes is and committed a howler when he got in the way of a free kick from Shelvey. Sam put in a superb cross for one of the goals and was generally involved. Shelvey was harrying all over the pitch as usual, although he had a great chance to score towards the end of the game. Zheng Zhi got a standing ovation when he came off, but this was not one of his better days and he seemed anxious to avoid injury. Burton scored a hat-trick and although they were relatively simple strikes, it showed that he can find the goal. Wagstaff was not that much in evidence when he came on. I was more excited by Tuna who showed that he had pace, a good sense of where to collect or place the ball and an ability to put in a good cross. Definitely one for the future.

Hiss of the Match This has been awarded to Juneau the Soccer Cat to all three officials. The referee ignored blatant fouls, the West Stand linesman made some odd decisions and the East Stand one seemed incompetent, particularly when it came to throw ins.

Crowd rating The Addickted were in great form and enjoyed their last match in the Championship. 9/10

Saturday 2 May 2009

Gunn thinks he can win at The Valley

Norwich boss Bryan Gunn thinks that it will be a difficult match at The Valley tomorrow but one that his side can realistically win: Gunn

We are predicting a 1-1 draw as Charlton's dismal season comes to an unexciting end.

The joys of being a Spanner

Should Millwall meet Leeds United in a charm merchants' play off clash, Spanners will have to apply for tickets through a voucher scheme. Only 1,000 of the Bermondsey boys will be allowed to attend. They will then have to exchange their tickets for vouchers at a motorway service station. The same arrangement will apply when Leeds come to the rust bucket.

Friday 1 May 2009

Ward to stay?

Addicks supremo Phil Parkinson knows that as he prepares for life in League 1 with a smaller budget to play with, the squad must be downsized dramatically. With a whole host of players out of contract, it's going to be a busy summer for Charlton as new faces arrive and others depart. 'There's a lot to sort out,' said Parkinson. 'A lot of players are out of contract so there are a lot of decisions to be made.' (Possibly also about Parkinson himself, but for now he is clearly in charge).

One player Phil Parkinson would be keen to sign on a permanent basis is on-loan defender Darren Ward, who was told by Wolverhampton Wanderers this week that they would not be requiring his services when they return to the Premier League next season. Parkinson said: 'Darren wants to come back down south. He's certainly added something to our squad, not only as a player but on the training ground.'

'He's a good example to the younger players. It's only on Thursday that he was told he wasn't wanted at Wolves so I haven't had a chance to speak to him about his future.'

Ward seems to have done a useful job in central defence alongside Hudson, although he may be departing and question marks surround the future of Jon Fortune who has been out of contention through injury in the latter half of the season.

Canaries complain about lack of tickets

The Canaries are complaining about a lack of tickets for Sunday's clash with Charlton, so expect some infilitration of our own stands (be suspicious of anyone sporting green and yellow or carrying packets of bird seed: Canaries