Sunday 30 November 2014

Varney unhappy about Steve Brown sacking

One time Addicks chief executive Peter Varney is clearly unhappy about the sacking of Steve Brown from his job as manager at Conference South outfit Ebbsfleet United.

Varney told The Non-League Paper that Brown was 'very unlucky' to lose his job. He said, 'I brought Steve into the club and I thought he did a great job. He's a very good coach. The chairman has made a statement and I don't want to add to that suffice to say Steve has been unfortunate given the team's league position. It's all about getting the new structure working at the moment'.

Brown was sacked by Kuwaiti owner Dr Abdulla Al Humaidi following Tuesday's 0-3 home defeat to play-off contenders Gosport Borough, the biggest loss Ebbsfleet suffered under his management. Ebbsfleet are fourth in the table, but there has been a run of poor home results with the club winning just one in six.

Ebbsfleet received 50 applications for the job within 24 hours of Steve's departure. There has been a speculation that Charlton fan Jonathan Acworth may see this as his chance to break into management, but Welling boss Jamie Day is rumoured to be one of the contenders.

Despite this setback to his coaching career, I am sure that if a role could be found for Steve 'he'll never let you down' Brown at Sparrows Lane, he would be welcomed by Charlton fans.

Saturday 29 November 2014

Charlton lose to 94th minute sucker punch

Charlton succumbed to a 94th minute goal from Ipswich at The Valley today, once again confirming the hoodoo of playing in front of the cameras. Charlton played well, but didn’t take their chances.

Ipswich won an early corner and the ball went just past the post. A quick counter attack saw Gudmundsson put the ball over after he was fed by Harriott. Pope had to be alert and get down bravely to deal with an Ipswich attack. The early chances continued and Pope had to dive to his left to make a good save from Anderson.

Harriott put in a decent opportunistic strike which went not far wide. Cousins hit a shot, it got blocked, Harriott hit it perfectly but the keeper diving to his right made a good save. Charlton kept up the pressure after the corner as Ipswich put eleven men behind the ball.

A shot from Harriott went straight at the keeper. Harriott had to turn a player and hit the ball after Solly had fed Gudmundsson in excellent build up play by Charlton. The shot was not far wide.

Solly controlled Murphy well in the penalty area. The ball bounced around in the penalty area after good work by Cousins but neither Fox nor Harriott were able to control it. Pope had to save well from Murphy at the expense of a corner.

Coquelin put in a great run, but there was too much of an angle to steer it past the keeper. A foul was awarded against Jackson although there was no contact. The set piece move by Ipswich didn’t work.

Charlton maintained some good pressure with a snap shot and then another attempt by Gudmundsson. Pope had to make a smart save to his right at the expense of a corner.

Charlton had had the upper hand and played some great football, but unfortunately the chances had not been converted. Coquelin and Solly were superb.

Half time: Addicks 0, Tractors

Ipswich made a livelier start to the second half, while Charlton were rather quiet, and an Ipswich shot curled just wide. Vetokele was fouled and Charlton got the free kick five yards outside the corner of the penalty area. Gudmundsson tried a cross rather than a shot and it evaded everybody.

Fox defended well at the expense of a corner. Gudmundsson completed the clearance. Charlton won a corner after good work by Coquelin. The corner was wasted.

Solly turned provider for Vetokele, but Chambers was able to stop a goal scoring opportunity. Vetokele had the goal at his mercy after a great ball by Harriott but couldn’t get the ball under control.

Ipswich won a corner after they had been fast on the break. Harriott ran at the defender but Gudmundsson couldn’t quite capitalise. Charlton kept the ball, but Cousins hit it over. Harriott held his head in his hands after putting in an air shot.

Gudmundsson got past his man but put the ball over. Johnnie Jackson came off on 75 minutes and was replaced by Lawrie Wilson. Stephen Hunt came off and was replaced by the giant Connor Sammon.

Wilson put in a ball to Vetokele, but he was not able to make use of it. Charlton won a corner, but it was poor. Chris Solly won another corner. Harriott was taken off and replaced by Tucudean. McGoldrick fired a shot straight at Pope.

Bikey made a superb challenge as Salmond was about to unleash a shot. Four minutes were added on as Ipswich piled on the pressure. Bulot came on in place of the tiring Gudmundsson. Pope punched clear from an Ipswich corner. Noel Hunt scored in the last minute giving Pope no chance to the delight of 3,000 tractor drivers.

Friday 28 November 2014

Coquelin to stay until end of year

Arsenal have confirmed that the loan stay of Francis Coquelin at Charlton is to be extended until December 30th: Coquelin

Thursday 27 November 2014

Keeper brought in on loan

Oldham goalkeeper and Philippines international Neil Etheridge has been brought in on loan until 30 December with Stephen Henderson out with a shoulder injury. He had a short loan spell with Charlton before.

Nick Pope is, however, expected to face the Tractor hordes on Saturday: Nick Pope

Pope comes from a family of Ipswich fans: Ipswich Town

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Bent joins Brighton on loan

One time Addicks striker and so-called 'transfer misfit' and 'bit part player' Darren Bent is to join Brighton and Hove Albion on loan, initially for 28 days: Darren Bent

Whether or not one thinks Bent is a shadow of his former self or can still weave some magic, it is doubtful whether we could have afforded his wages. This raises a bigger question.

Roland's strategy has been built around the arrival and enforcement of financial fair play (FFP), enabling a prudent club to compete on a reasonably level playing field. I always had my doubts about it because it seemed to me that FFP was susceptible to a legal challenge on competition law grounds, as a recent case in Spain has emphasised: Court decision .

In any case, FFP has now been substantially diluted. The club that changed their minds at the last minute to provide the required 75 per cent majority? Brighton and Hove Albion.

While I think that Roland has edged away from a formal break even strategy, it is difficult to see how the club can be run at a small loss and still compete. There are dangers in going down a 'player farm' route and in any case it has been our declared intention to hold on to our Academy talent. We don't have the sophistication or resources of Southampton as far as such a strategy is concerned.

Last season we made £1.7m on player sales and got a £900k bonus out of our cup 'run', but still made a loss of £5.7m. One implication is that we badly need a cup run, or at least a match against a top club, which would be good news for fans as well as financially.

Monday 24 November 2014

Tulio de Melo rejects Addicks

Striker and free agent Tulio de Melo has turned down an offer to join Charlton. He wanted £20k a week, but the club was reportedly only prepared to offer 11k (which still sounds like a lot to me): No thanks

Pope enjoyed Millwall game

Man of the match Nick Pope enjoyed his game against Millwall, despite one word being used to describe him by the visiting supporters: Nick Pope

Tuesday 18 November 2014

Fewer shots but more goals

Charlton Athletic and Leeds have had the least shots in the Championship, yet have each scored eight more goals than Sheffield Wednesday. The Addicks have the lowest number of shots on goal of any team in the division. Despite having just 172 shots compared to Norwich City's 289, Charlton have managed to score 20 goals.

For Sheffield Wednesday the opposite applies. The Owls have managed 221 shots in total, 49 more than Charlton - and scored eight less goals.

According to the South London Press, Lawrie Wilson may be the next player to go out on loan.

Saturday 15 November 2014

Ahearne-Grant's England call up

Karlan Ahearne-Grant has been called up for the England under 18s for their double header against Poland. Here he talks about how the confidence that Bob Peeters has shown in him has been a boost and how he thinks his play has benefitted as a result of playing alongside older players: Ahearne-Grant

Elsewhere Ipswich boss Mick McCarty has said that teams like Charlton could be priced out of promotion by the dilution of the Football League's financial fair play rules: Fair Play

Charlton voted against the rule change and have complained about its effects. It is certainly a setback for Roland's strategy.

Friday 14 November 2014

Pigott to return

Joe Pigott is to return from Newport County when his loan spell ends. He has scored three goals for the League 2 club, but they cannot afford to keep him: Pigott

Another spell at a lower league club might benefit his development.

We have a new version of the curse of Charlton with the sacking of charm merchant Uwe Rosler at Wigan. Normally managers get the sack after the humiliation of being beaten by the Addicks, but Rosler went after Wigan's home game with Charlton was moved to a Friday because of the needs of egg chasing.

Rosler will be remembered for his confrontation with Bob Peeters.

Thursday 13 November 2014

Riga's Blackpool hell

Former Charlton manager José Riga has given an in depth interview with The Guardian about his experiences at Blackpool: Jose Riga

Despite the experience, he would like the chance to manage in England again. Karl Oyston meanwhile continues to run Blackpool into the ground. Whatever Roland's faults, there are far worse owners around.

Tuesday 11 November 2014

Tulio de Melo on trial

29-year old Brazilian striker Tulio de Melo is on trial with Charlton, tweets Richard Cawley of the South London Press. He has been playing for a Ligue 1 club: Career details

Saturday 8 November 2014

Three points for the Addicks

It was supposed to be an easy three points for Reading, but a battling Charlton performance saw them take all three points at the Madjeski today. Charlton have moved up to 8th in the table.

Neither side made an early impact, although Reading won two corners. Charlton then developed a good spell of pressure with Harriott looking lively in front of the crowd of 16,989, 1,449 of them Addickted.

Charlton won a couple of corners as the game passed the twenty minute mark. Solly was having to work hard while Fox was having something of a duel with Mackie, but Fox did well against him. Ben Haim was resolute in defence.

Gudmundsson put in a long range effort, a good shot but a bit too close to the keeper. Charlton had a good build up, but the delivery from Harriott was poor.

A shot from Harriott was blocked as the rain lashed down. When Charlton gave the ball away, Bikey intervened effectively.

Ben Haim had to concede a corner, but the Reading shot went wide.

Ben Haim supplied Solly who put in a cross and Vetokele scored a superb goal to make it 1-0 to Charlton.

Reading won a corner, Hector had a free header and put it wide. Henderson was blocked.

HT: Royals 0, Addicks 1

A shot from Murray went straight into the arms of Henderson.

Solly defended well, making a great tackle. Reading won a corner after the ball cannoned off Buyens. Henderson was blocked again, but referee Neil Swarbrick did not see that there was a problem.

Norwood put in a shot that came off the post. An attempt by Gudmundsson was blocked.

Harriott put in a curling shot that wasn’t far off the top left-hand corner.

Vetokele came off and Coquelin came on. Harriott played up front on his own.

Johnnie Jackson charged down a Reading shot from a counter attack after Solly slipped when Obita advanced.

A late challenge on Bikey by Mackie put the defender on the floor leading to the first yellow card of the day.

Mackie got away from Fox and Ben Haim had to stretch. Cox came off and was replaced by Robson-Kanu. Harriott was tiring. Blackman replaced Kelly.

Charlton counter attacked well. Tucudean came on in place of Harriott who had run himself into the ground. Mackie put in a shot and Henderson made a great save. He then gathered the ball calmly from the corner.

Reading started to pile on the pressure. They got a soft free kick. Charlton counter attacked and Frederici made two great saves from Tucudean. A number of players were looking tired. Obita got a yellow card for a foul on Cousins. Mackie came off .

Gudmundsson was fouled. He was replaced by Bulot. Six minutes were added on. Reading won a corner but it went out for a goal kick. Tucudean won a free kick for Charlton. Jackson got a yellow card as he took one for the team. The move ended in a Charlton goal kick.

A shot from Williams went out for a goal kick. Henderson claimed under pressure from Murray. Finally, the whistle was blown.

Friday 7 November 2014

Reading look forward to three points

Reading will be looking to continue their climb up the table when they host Charlton at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday. Two wins from their last three matches, including a comfortable 3-0 victory over Rotherham United on Tuesday, have seen the Royals edge closer to the top half as they look to fulfil their pre-season predictions as playoff contenders.

Nigel Adkins will certainly be confident of success due to his side's recent home form, which has seen them score 15 goals in their last six games, losing one and winning four in the process. Reading will be be boosted by the return of Garath McCleary from injury, although he may be forced to settle for a place on the bench as Adkins looks to ease him back.

It is now three games without a victory for the Addicks. Away form is a concern, with just one victory on their travels so far, although they have proven hard to beat with only two defeats.

Rhoys Wiggins is once again on the injury table for the visitors having fractured his foot in the draw with Leeds, and the left-back is expected to miss six weeks of action. There are doubts about how strong Morgan Fox is in that position given his performance in recent outings. Coquelin can play in that position, but his presence would be missed in midfield.

Igor Vetokele continues to step up his recovery from injury, however, and the striker could now be fit enough to start having made consecutive appearances off the bench.

Odds: Reading 5/6, Draw 5/2, Charlton 10/3.

Thursday 6 November 2014

Coquelin could extend stay

Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin has said that he could extend his loan stay at The Valley if all goes well. He knew a lot about the club before he came and watched them play last Saturday: Coquelin

Charlton have fallen to 10th in the table after Brentford won at Nottingham Forest.

Tuesday 4 November 2014

Addicks battle for the point

Charlton won an early free kick in a dangerous position, but Jackson’s effort was headed clear. Leeds had a chance, but put the ball wide. Wiggins won a corner for Charlton after combining well with Harriott. Charlton were making some good moves, particularly on the left.

The formation seemed fluid, sometimes 4-4-2, then 4-4-1-1 and at other times 4-5-1.

A block by Wilson led to the first corner for Leeds, but it led to nothing more than a Charlton goal kick. Harriott slipped as an opportunity presented itself.

Leeds won a corner following a free kick which Henderson collected. After a great move by the Addicks culminating in a great cross from Harriott, Charlton won their third corner. Bikey put in an effort which did not have enough power and it was cleared just short of the line.

Henderson had to make a very good save at the expense of a corner. Bikey headed the ball clear.

Ben Haim made a good run, but needed to pass the ball.

Charlton had edged it, but had not created many goal scoring opportunities. Leeds won a last minute corner, but it was headed clear.

HT 0-0

Cousins got a yellow card for a foul. Leeds then went ahead with Mowatt putting the ball into the top left-hand corner after being given too much time and space.

Tucudean came off after a quiet first half and was replaced by Vetokele.

Leeds applied some pressure, but Charlton survived. Buyens made way for the Arsenal loan player Coquelin who went on to show that he is no Frimpong.

Wiggins put in a great cross and Gudmundsson fired the ball in to make it 1-1 on 62 minutes. Charlton found themselves under pressure for a spell, failed to clear their lines and Leeds made it 2-1 through Mowatt on 67 minutes.

Harriott was taken off and Onyewu came on and won an early free kick. Wiggins had to go off injured, reducing Charlton to ten men. A foul on the big American led to a Charlton penalty. Gudmundsson equalised. Wilson went out to the left and Cousins moved to right back.

Leeds got a fortunate corner. Five minutes were added on. Charlton defended well, with Coquelin effective, but Leeds won a late corner, then the whistle went.

Monday 3 November 2014

Redfearn looks forward to first outing as coach

One time Addick Neil Redfearn is looking forward to his first outing as Leeds coach at Elland Road tomorrow when he hopes to end a seven match winless run against Charlton: Leeds United

Leeds are currently then subject of a takeover approach by Austrian energy drinks company Red Bull, but Massimo Cellino is only willing to sell a minority stake. If a takeover did go ahead, the club might be renamed Red Bull Leeds or Leeds Red Bulls.

Charlton won 1-0 at Leeds last year and drew 1-1 the year before. They are unbeaten in their last six visits to Elland Road. Odds are Leeds, 13/10; Draw, 12/5; Charlton, 2/1.

One supporter has summarised the current dilemma for the Addicks as follows: 'We are falling into a regular pattern of allowing clubs 15-20 attempts on goal and they are turning those into goals whilst we are needing 20-25 to get a solitary goal - or over the last two games heading up to 45! The approach work is fine but we do not have an end product- only 8 of the other 23 clubs in the Championship have scored fewer goals than us and no-one above us are in that list (which is why there are above us!).'

The Addicks will have available Arsenal central midfielder Francis Coquelin who has joined on a month's loan. The 23-year-old, who spent the 2013-14 campaign with Freiburg, has made just one appearance for the Gunners this season, in their League Cup defeat to Southampton. The France Under-21 international has made 44 appearances for Arsene Wenger's side since his debut in 2008, and has been noted for his versatility after appearing in both defence and midfield. His arrival seems to have been generally welcomed by the Addickted.

Saturday 1 November 2014

Vetokele saves the day

After coming on as a substitute in the 65th minute, Igor Vetokele equalised for Charlton in the 70th minute to give the Addicks a 1-1 draw against Sheffield Wednesday at The Valley today. Charlton remain 7th in the table.

Former Real Madrid player Royston Drenthe scored the opener for Wednesday on 27 minutes. After neatly spinning past Franck Moussa on the half-way line, Drenthe ran at the Charlton back four. He ghosted inside Wiggins far too easily before drilling a crisp shot from the edge of the D past Henderson and into the bottom right-hand corner to register his first goal since signing on loan from Reading.

Bob Peeters turned to wideman Johann Gudmundsson at the interval as his side displayed a renewed vigour after the break. Chris Solly’s 30-yard thunderbolt almost got the Addicks back on level terms, before George Tucudean’s mis-hit volley cannoned into the ground and clipped the top of the cross bar on its way over as Charlton began to turn the screw.

On 70 minutes, that pressure finally paid off. Wiggins, who was at fault for the first goal, picked the ball up inside his own half and surged forward from left-back, jinking inside Liam Palmer who was scared to make a challenge just inside his own penalty area. The defender’s cross-cum-shot flew across the box for substitute Vetokele, who found himself in the right place at the right time to tap home from six yards.

The Addicks thought they had found a late winner in the first minute of stoppage time, but Gudmundsson’s strike was ruled out for offside as both sides were left to settle for a point.

Morrison out, Onyewu in

Michael Morrison has gone on to an emergency loan to Birmingham City until the end of the year, while much travelled American international Oguchi Onyewu has been brought in on a short-term loan: Loans

I always thought that Michael Morrison was an honest player who did his best for us. Although he made the occasional error, on the whole he did well for us. However, he evidently does not fit into the style of play favoured by Bob Peeters who likes a ball player.

The decision has provoked some discussion about the intentions and strategy of the current regime, but it doesn't seem inconsistent with what they have done so far.