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Robinson has brought the team back but not our club

Happy anniversary to Karl Robinson. After the disappointing draw at home to MK Dons he talked about how far we have come as a team since last time we played Franchise in April. I would rather look at how far we have come in the past year.

In fact just over a year ago I was at, what turned out to be Russell Slade’s last game, Swindon. It was truly demoralizing, and the road down and down under Duchatelet appeared to have no turning points or crossroads. The incompetence of Meire and the vindictiveness of Duchatelet apparently knew no bounds.

It is clear that Robinson has worked exceptionally hard behind the scenes clearing away the garbage, the mistrust and the obtuseness that has showered over us since the two Belgians walked in the door. Yes Meire has been gagged and Duchatelet has lost interest but Robinson has rebuilt a football team, not in it’s greater sense because that won’t happen until Meire, Duchatelet and Keohane are gone, but what Robinson has done is create a platform where player and fan can be as one again.

Many were skeptical when the manager brought in Lee Bowyer and Johnnie Jackson during the summer but it was a smart move, and my are we far better tactically than we ever were under a succession of foreign nobody coaches and assistant managers, or whatever we called them. Forster-Caskey for one is a perfect example of a player improving and thriving under the tutelage of Bowyer and Jacko. And both men know this football club inside out from past and present.

Robinson has not had it all his own way. One of his idiosyncrasies is that he likes to make out that he has a good poker face, but keep him talking and I’m convinced he would eventually tell you his online banking passwords. He has not had it easy and he will be frustrated that there are still ‘outside’ eyes on him particularly regarding players, budgets and messaging.

However he has been given some semblance of board support, although we must weigh that up in the context of how much money has been raised by selling players, with Konsa on the shelf next, and that our squad is still the weakest among our promotion rivals.

Nonetheless it is important to remind ourselves that Robinson will oversee his 400th game as a football manager tomorrow. Some going for a 37-year old. Yes he can be a bit ‘marmite’, but I believe he comes with ability and a vision and importantly at this level good man-management skills and an eye for a player, whether to buy or to develop. He’s not perfect, but he is perfection personified when compared to recent managers that have been etched onto our club history.

There has been recently an outpouring of ‘feel good factor’ stories. This one from last Sunday’s Mail gives a balanced assessment and carries quotes from Richard Wiseman, the chairman of CAST, but of course nothing from the tight lipped club.

Journalist and Charlton fan Joe Hall wrote a good article for City AM following the recent Bromley Addicks’ meeting and last week at the welcome reunion of City Addicks, there was a lot of warmth on both sides of the aisle as fans met with Robinson and the much loved skipper.

I’m in a better place as a Charlton fan, mainly due to Robinson and aided by seeing Bowyer and Jackson stand alongside him. But I’m not fully there yet, not by any means, and judging by the attendances nor are a lot of supporters. Best estimates have the ‘unofficial’ crowd on Tuesday night at 6,500, which is soul destroying. Just over 6,000 Charlton fan’s in The Valley to watch us stay in close contention to the top of the table. Meire had a theory that we’d all be back if the team was successful. Well, apparently not.

So well done to Robinson on his one-year anniversary, something we thought impossible under the stewardship of these muppets. I am happy he is here, and that he’s given us a team we can believe in and support with an element of pride, but let’s be clear I won’t get my football club back until we rid ourselves of Roland Duchatelet first.

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. BigPete #

    Fully agree with the sentiment, but the way we are achiveing, with 1 goal margins and late winners/equalisers, i fear what will happen if we lose JFC to injury along with Magennis, i dont think there is enough quality on the bench to maintain the luck without them

    November 24, 2017
    • Steve #

      I think if we lost JFC and BJM to injury but the stay aways put +10k on attendance we’d be fine
      It is soul distroying to see the swathes of empty seats but we probably need to look at ourselves not just the owner for the answer to that one

      November 24, 2017

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