Henderson to miss a month
I think few would disagree that Stephen Henderson is the best all round goalkeeper the club have had for a long while, but there is a reason why he has only started around 150 games in 8 seasons. Henderson damaged his ‘other’ shoulder before the friendly last week with Dulwich Hamlet and a scan has revealed that he will need an operation and will be out for the first month of the season.
That is a huge blow, as we know how much we missed him last season and the defence in front of him looks very threadbare presently. Nick Pope played today but has looked nervous on the big stage, but Luzon more than indicated that he will go with the 23-year old as Hendo’s deputy.
I have no doubt that there is a really good goalie in there. Ben Roberts really rated Pope and he has had two storming seasons in League Two at York City and Bury, and that last spell would have greatly restored his confidence, plus he has had a fair amount of minutes pre-season. What is without question is that Addicks’ fans get fully behind this young keeper from the first minute when he walks out against QPR.
It sounded a good run out today, and the club, who put on a number of family activities, were rewarded with a decent crowd of 8,678. The new entry system caused many issues by the sounds of it, so it wasn’t only the players that were getting a pre-season warm-up.
Guy Luzon is still hoping, as are the rest of us, that two or three new faces will join the club. One is James Henry, who tops Luzon’s list. I would imagine that the other two be central defenders with us looking so light on numbers at the back. Strange then that Ben Haim, Roger Johnson, Joe Gomez, Michael Morrison and Andre Bikey have all been moved on, sold or frozen out.
One name that has been mentioned the most is AS Nancy’s central defender Clément Lenglet. Much is thought of the 20-year old, and I would be happy with his acquisition, but with Pope and Fox, it leaves us gasping for Championship experience in the back five. I wonder if Luzon will later dip into the loan market to see what some more senior pros there are looking for an opportunity after not starting the season with their clubs?
Igor Vetokele was missing again with another minor injury. I worry for this boy, and I would like to see another striker on the shopping list.