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Not much to like about this team

Frustrating watching the Addicks at the moment, and I’m thinking I may do something else with my time on Friday afternoon rather than watch the Accrington Stanley game from behind the sofa.

The biggest barrier to watching them at the moment for me is that as a team they are hard to like. What I mean by that is there are no characters, or any sense of leadership. Where’s the midfield terrier, who will chase anything and anyone all around the pitch?

There’s no exciting wing player who will get your bum off the seat, no one who will do the unexpected, even if was the 70% wrong decision, no talisman striker who can be relied upon for a sudden goal when one never looked like coming.

Over the past three or so seasons, on the pitch anyway, there’s always been someone to rely on, bank on, rally behind.

This squad and the way we are playing is missing an identity. I don’t like to dwell on previous players but there isn’t a 2021 Patrick Bauer, Dillon Phillips, Lyle Taylor, Josh Cullen, Joe Aribo, Naby Sarr, Ricky Holmes, Conor Gallagher or a gut-busting Jacko beating his chest.

Jason Pearce is a leader no doubt, but his career is coming to a natural close, Jacko was like Peter Pan.

Lee Bowyer, and Jacko have to recreate a personality for this team. So hard when no one can be at grounds to encourage and foster it, but Bow played every minute like his life depended on it. I’m a Charlton fan, I expect to lose more than we win, but please give us something to cling onto, and back, and to, well be proud off.

13 Comments Post a comment
  1. Steve Morley #

    I think one of your ‘terriers’ would possibly be George Lapslie, who Charlton are going to offload. Although, due to circumstances beyond the club’s control, this was a hastily formed team and was doing ok until Innis and the Norwich loanee got injured and things may improve when they return to the team, albeit a few more weeks yet. But you are right, where are the characters that you would normally expect to see in a Charlton team?, not many in this squad!

    January 3, 2021

    It’s hard to pick out the characters watching remotely but I agree. Bogle just looks a league above where he should be and others we are only seeing in bursts. I like Williams & Maddison but they just haven’t had the game time. Chuks is about the only player I warm to in terms of effort but things have to improve or they play offs will be a stretch. Am a bit nervous about Friday, Sky games never go well and there is a bit of press love towards Accrington where usually we are the plucky news story.

    January 3, 2021
    • Maddison and Williams are characters, but they need to be allowed to express themselves.

      Agree on Chuks. My current favourite player.

      January 3, 2021
  3. Steve #

    Firstly Happy New Year CA mate, here’s hoping. For all sorts of things.
    Yeah was pretty insipid and uninspiring but tbf half the first choice first team missing. Innis/Famewo/Shinnie/Doughty/Aneke all starters and with them, CBs especially, we had character – real desire to defend, al them clean sheets remember.
    This squad is undeniably so much weaker than last time in L1 and we all know the reasons why.
    Injured players back and a few Jan additions should see us in the play offs but this run probably costing us auto chances.

    January 3, 2021
    • Happy New Year Steve.

      I know. You are right.

      When Alfie went down with his innocuous hammy I looked to the ceiling and was oh no. He is one of a few players (Maddison, Williams, Chuks the others?) that can change a game. We really have missed him, and Innis and Famewo for sure.

      Trouble is will we see Alfie and Akin again? Oh I am full of the joys of the season aren’t I? 😂

      January 3, 2021
  4. LP #

    Get a grip boys. Just focus on the fact that we have a club and a wonderful owner. It will get better and I for one am going to sit back and enjoy the ride. Ok its crap at the moment but it was crap before bowyer came along -we have all got to be patient. At least at the moment i can sit in the warm and watch the crap. Happy new year CA.

    January 4, 2021
  5. Shadow Play #

    Yep, I mentioned the lack of a couple of talisman players in one of your blogs before Christmas. We have Chuks and Maddison but neither are starters, Williams is either a 60 minute player if he starts or he comes off the bench for the last quarter. Ryan Inniss could be that player too but he’s out for some time (late February) and there’s no one else. Teams need to gel around such players, in our last couple of promotion seasons we had such characters, someone needs to step up.

    January 4, 2021
  6. Shadow Play #

    Another thing we need is that strong spine – we have a good keeper and Jason Pearce at CB but elsewhere through the centre things are too fluid with only Watson and Washinggton assured of a start. Getting in Ronnie Schwarz would give our attack some focus but we need a bit of pace out wide. Bow is using Maatsen as a wing back but he’s a better player at left-back who gets forward.

    January 4, 2021
    • Absolutely agree. I’m okay with the rotation to a point. It makes sense to protect players with what will be a ridiculous time crunch of games to season’s end. But we need a consistent spine. That wins promotions.

      Yes, and put Maatsen back at LB.

      January 4, 2021
  7. Mark Tooting Red Army  #

    Hi Chicago Addick 

    over the years I’ve enjoyed your blog following your adventures in the Windy City and the windy island of Bermuda. I have relied on my Charlton fix via Forever Charlton, VOTV & CAFC. I have really missed reading Dr Kish & all his inside knowledge. I class your blog as reliable, level headed and thoughtful. 

    I do however take slight issue with your negativity to Bowyer. I feel whether this is misguided or not that Bowyer stood firm during the Dushbag &  ESI disasterous ownership of the club, the has had to deal with the transfer embargo & Pandemic. Taylor jumping ship last season and being left with a vastly depleted squad through no fault of his own, I think Bows deserves some slack or alot of slack, he’s got for me alot of credit still in the Addick Bank.Lets not forget the unbeaten run and Amos holding out for 6 clean sheets. Let’s surely judge Lee in May?

    I trust Gallen & Bows to bring in players to strengthen the squad through loans in January window. It’s a weird season because of the Pandemic but we finally “appear” to finally have an owner who gets Charlton who seems a nice guy. I feel disheartened that after a few poor games fans are being negative towards Bows.  Let’s stay positive? There are 27 games to go, I’m very pleased were 6th and very much in the mix, a scenario surely beyond our dreams at start of the season before Sandguard appeared?

    I’m missing Valley and have cycled down three times during pandemic just to feel contacted to Charlton. The excellent Valley Pass coverage and commentary from Greg and Tel & Scotty & Curbs presenting have helped but it ain’t the same as walking down Floyd road and entering East Stand looking over the Valley from a height & singing along with the drummers in the Covered End choir.

    I’m quietly hoping that come end of season I will see my 8th promotion . As 2020-21 season marks for my familie’s 140yrs of Addiction – My fathers first match 1945, my first season 1971 & my son first match 2005……..Come on You Addicks !

    Best wishes for 2021

    Mark aka Tooting Red Army 

    ps Feel free if you want to post this or not 

    January 4, 2021
    • I definitely will post, and have Mark. Appreciate the comments and your support of my Blog.

      Lee has a ton of credit in my Addicks’ bank too, I love the bloke, but just have a issue with his current habit of playing players in the wrong position and by looks of it trying to be too clever. Plenty of reasons why there’s a lack of form, cohesion or performance but I can’t think of many to be playing Matthews at left back and Maatsen in midfield. Anyway how good is it to be debating football stuff and not ownership issues or whether we are going to have a club or not?

      Mark, i really hope before the end of the season you and many other thousands of Addicks can get back into The Valley, and even away, to cheer the boys on. We need each other.

      Best wishes to you and your Addick family for 2021. COYR.

      January 4, 2021
  8. Ken #

    Interesting you mention Ricky Holmes who was hugely influential during his time at the Valley.

    I’ve been following his career since his departure to Sheffield United and eventual forced ‘retirement’ from the game.
    I’m pleaded to say that following his retirement, he had a call from Northampton FC and following a spell of treatment with them, has appeared in a number of competitive first team games for Northampton.

    All the best Ricky, we miss you down at the Valley and folllowing so many lacklustre performances from the team, we could certainly do with your skill, vision and tenacity.

    January 5, 2021
    • Ken – Ricky was excellent wasn’t he. Could turn a game on it’s head, an old fashioned type of player. You could imagine him having a tab and a can of light ale at half-time, I didn’t see that he was playing for Northampton. That’s great. Top man.

      January 5, 2021

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