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Charlton Athletic 0 MK Dons 2

Let’s start first of all with that MK Dons were pretty good. They have a clear style, they move the ball confidently and patiently and have built a close knit team that are well coached and drilled.

To beat them we had to be confident, brave, smart and decisive and we were none of those things.

MK Dons also have no injuries and are riding high on a very good run of form. Charlton are the mirror opposite and it didn’t bode well.

And bode it didn’t.

I thought with a somewhat of a nervous twitch every time they played the ball quickly around our box, that the game was pretty even for the first 40 minutes, but we got undone again with a ball played in between Matthews and the centre-halves, and we go into the break one-down.

We didn’t get going 2nd half as they started on the front foot, but we picked up and Chelsea’s Mason Burstow missed our best chance unable to get a great fizzed ball across the goal by Morgan even on target.

They soon scored a second, and then I lost interest, but at least I didn’t have to get home unlike the official 8,202 Addicks there to witness our 4th defeat on the trot.

Since the final whistle over wine I’ve been trying to work out which is the worst team I’ve seen in my lifetime.

I still remember that awful 1979/80 team, but Pardew’s inspired disaster of 2008/9 and the pitiful group that Russell Slade and Robinson had in 2016/17 stick in the throat. We lost 14 that whole season though, we’ve lost 16 so far this.

Like buses, four in just 13 seasons.

Jacko: “It’s down to me now to pick a side at Hillsborough on Saturday that I think warrants the shirt.”

Photo credit: Kyle Andrews

17 Comments Post a comment
  1. Les #

    It was a stroll in the park for MK , playing five at the back to try keeping it tight and nicking a 1-0 was never going to work.
    Leko lost up front , Burstow doing his best on his own , and not starting DJ the only player who can take people on and cross with both feet we were left with the clock ticking down and the amazing sight of 5 players standing across the back with no one to mark watching Morgan getting more and more wound up, DJ coming on as a centre forward and young goal machine Kanu not getting a chance.
    Play players out of position and the confidence will drain out of them.
    We have enough centre backs , full backs and midfielders and all we needed up front was to be brave and play Kanu with Burstow and DJ from the start which would get the crowd behind the team and give it a go.

    February 23, 2022
    • Chris #

      Totally agree with you Les
      Albie Morgan gave his all last night and I shared his frustration as other players around him looked below par.
      MKD have a strong and talented side and showed desire to fight for everything they could and caused us defensive problems.
      Injuries have hit the squad very hard and Jacko has his work cut out till players are available.

      February 23, 2022
      • Morgan for all his limitations at least understands what it is to wear a Charlton badge on his shirt.

        February 23, 2022
  2. Mark #

    I knew last night would end badly and therefore saved myself £10, and much frustration, by not watching the live feed here in the west country.
    The management team have sadly lost direction, input and impetus. Yes, they are suffering key injuries – but you have to be able to bring in reserves to fill those gaps, sadly – and mainly due to last summer’s pigs ear of a recruitment process – we have a first team …. and the rest. To put it bluntly the rest are just not up to scratch or delivering the goods.

    The only positive from last night is that we are still 9 points ahead of the bottom 4, but at this rate of attrition that will inevitably dwindle away and by the end of March it may only be goal difference keeping us out of immediate trouble.
    Whatever Jacko and Jason try, whatever motivational skills they have, it cannot overcome what is clearly a squad that for some reason cannot come up with the goods. Jacko will have to man up and admit that his lack of experience in the hot seat is not helping – remember, he’s only been in it for 5 months as the stand-in and then appointed manager.
    On top of that we have an inexperienced owner who is also still finding his feet – he is learning quickly that owning a niche company in the USA is a lot different to owning the bottom-less financial pit that is an English Football League club and all of the baggage that goes with that!

    From where I sit there is help available (and probably more than willing to help out….) and that is sitting in the East stand at every game watching from the Charlton TV studio. It is time to use the trump card and Call for Curbs.

    Last Saturday Curbs explained the benefit of having two trusted colleagues around him in Merv Day and Keith Peacock, and how he relied on their expertise – whether that be by putting an arm around the shoulder on the training pitch, or a quiet word in the canteen after training or more practically out on the training pitch.
    Jacko could more than use the wealth of experience that Curbs has in the Charlton hot-seat. He was a man-manager, a motivator, a tactician and more. Him sitting in the east stand isn’t going to help Charlton avoid a very nasty last two months of the season, having him out at Sparrows Lane or just in Jacko’s office as a sounding board may just help.

    It takes a strong man to admit that, yes, I have a problem which I’m finding difficult to solve and I need some help for a few weeks…. Jacko has to look at himself in the mirror and admit that to himself first – and then Call for Curbs.
    If not there is the real prospect of fourth tier football at the Valley next season….. and then only one cock-up down to non-league level. You may think that this is impossible – try telling that to the likes of York City, Torquay United etc.

    February 23, 2022
    • Great comments Mark.

      This is a not knock on Jacko, or maybe it is, but I feel that those watching Charlton TV get more tactical insight from Curbs and Brownie than the players in the dressing room.

      Jacko might well be reaching out to Curbs but I think TS is too proud and too much of his own man to involve anyone like Curbs or Varney.

      Jacko is struggling but leadership and direction comes from the top.

      Anyways I am sure Thomas’ son is making a massive difference.

      February 23, 2022
  3. Mike #

    Couldn’t go Saturday and last night, as my Partner had some hospital appointments so gave my season ticket to my friends brother. So watched the game against Oxford in the comfort of my own home and very glad I wasn’t there after that debarkle but decided not to watch MK Dons as suspected would be much the same, so listened to parts of the game on radio. Apart from two less goals pretty much the same, but with a bit more effort. Errors at the back, with their first shot on target going in, same as on Saturday and absolutely no fire power up front.

    Still playing same system which every other team now knows how to overcome it and they do!
    Why didn’t Jackson listen to all the pundits on the show on Saturday, who all agreed, park the bus, get everyone behind the ball and grind out a draw to stop the rot and maybe even get a goal on a breakaway?

    Nope it was back to same system with various players being played out of position. On listening to some of the commentary, agree with Les and Chris, Morgan was really trying and putting a shift in, whilst Gilbey and Co stand around and watch, yet Jacko will probably drop Morgan for the next game! Plus why for the second game in a row aren’t we making use of all our subs, when both of the opposing teams are using theres and they are comfortably winning?

    Now Burstow will be out for the next game, so we won’t have any first team forward and don’t count Leko as a forward. I see Davidson is really doing well at Swindon and has been scoring, why hasn’t Jackson recalled him considering our injury problems? No doubt unlike other clubs, who have done it to us before, Charlton didn’t put a call back clause in on his loan period!

    Inniss out yet again, surely we are not going to resign him and why the hell did we give Aneke a three year contract, he will at the most only play about one third of that whilst the other two thirds he will be out injured, it’s a complete joke, who the f…. does these medical checks etc? That was flip by the way 🙂

    I thought this new coach who Jackson brought in was meant to be bringing in some fresh idea etc,, well so far since he’s arrived we have been going down hill pretty fast.

    Jackson definately needs to change formation as it currently just isn’t working and just go back to basics and play players in their normal best position, drop both Gilbey and Leko who are just luxury players, plus Matthews and Gunter who are as bad as one another and bring in Elewere, who showed under Adkins, that he could play, but for some reason Jackson won’t use him.

    Anyway at present, can’t see us getting anything at Sheffied Weds next Saturday, apart from another drubbing, unless drastic changes are made and we defend like demons and maybe get a lucky goal!

    February 23, 2022
  4. houndal #

    No Hope and Bob Hope, and Bob’s just left the building………

    February 23, 2022
  5. David #

    Why do Charlton seem to sign injury prone players, especially Chuks who is a known quantity.

    February 23, 2022
  6. LP #

    Always interesting reading all the experts on here – but there are some really good points and names of players I’d forgotten already that we’ve got!! Elewere and Davison. Thank God I’m not in charge eh?
    It was so distressing last night – and really not helped by all the youngsters with free tickets. Where do they come from because some of them have no idea how to behave at a football match – did we give tickets to schools in SE14/16? Don’t they have to have teachers with them? Embarrassing all round really. Highlight of the night for him indoors was me leaping out of my seat in extra time when the ref blew his whistle and it wasn’t the end.
    Not sure I agree about how good MKD were – we seemed to have acres of space/time in the first half – but perhaps they knew they didn’t have to worry.

    February 23, 2022
    • Charltonsfinest #

      Yes far too many kids (unsupervised and irritating) makes me think my season ticket is a waste of good money if they’re allowing this in the most expensive part of the West Stand. Can’t they all be accommodated in the “Family” areas of the North Stand and other unused parts of the stadium. Its bad enough with the quality of the football let alone all the kids. This whole new pricing structure for matches is proving a joke and getting beyond my tolerance in terms of fairness to regular season ticket holders

      February 23, 2022
  7. Steve #

    Is it the team that’s poor or the coaching and refusal to switch a system that clearly isn’t working.
    I know nothing except I hate 3-5-2
    jayesemi is a quality player at this level and higher imo but only when played as natural attacking attacking winger, at wing back he’ll end up getting nutmegged and clearly not happy – just one example
    Do we honestly think there’s not a manager out there that could get this group performing better?

    February 23, 2022
  8. Shadow Play #

    I think that the 3-5-2 formation has had its day, it’s become predictable and teams have worked out that angled crosses between the lines tend to open us up and leave the defence under-manned.

    Interestingly we changed formation late in the Bolton match and started to look dangerous – we even scored a goal but then we lost several key players and that was that. Under Bow we were always flexible playing sometimes two or three different formations in a match, but Jacko is reluctant to shift away from his preferred set up.

    Anyhow, it’s season over and my only hope is that a few of the academy side get some game time and also that Jacko learns from the rebuilding last season and gets his work dome early. We need some physicality in pretty much all areas – Scott Fraser’s acquisition suggests that Jacko is already thinking along those lines.

    February 23, 2022
    • Liam Manning is an interesting read. Just 36, grew up as a youth coach at Ipswich in his 20’s and then went to West Ham’s academy. Then plucked from nowhere by the (Man) City Group and backed and sponsored by them to manage in the U.S. and Belgium. Clever, educated, progressive his teams regularly switch between 4 formations 3-4-2-1, 3-4-3, 3-4-1-2 or a 4-2-3-1.

      No favoured formation but Manning picks one based on available players and rarely makes wholesale changes. Manning has built a small confident, flexible group of players told to counter press and patiently keep the ball.

      February 23, 2022
  9. Mark #

    Ah yes, Sandgaard junior CA – I’d almost forgotten about him.
    Sorry Thomas but this is just a whiff too far of nepotism and reminds me of the dark days of the Duchatalet regime when he brought in completely inexperienced individuals into important positions within the club who were far more of a hindrance than a help….

    Charlton Athletic is (or at least was….) a professional football league club – this is not a cottage industry, it is a unique industry that needs to be run by professionals who know what they are doing.
    Clearly this club is still a toy for yet another rich individual – until this owner, or the next one, gets that idea into their head then we will continue this downward spiral. Thomas needs to
    a) bring in an experienced Chief Executive with football league experience to run the club on a daily basis and act as the link between the manager and owner.
    b) give the inexperienced management team ALL the help they need at the moment – wherever that may come from.
    c) have a comprehensive clear out of dead wood in the summer and bring in a swathe of new players that can do the job of getting promotion (and sadly, that may be out of division 2 back into division 1 the way things are going……). Chris Powell did it so successfully just over a decade ago producing a record winning promotion team. And finally
    d) STOP selling young academy players, particularly so early in their career. Burstow will I fear never meet his full potential by being one of Chelski’s trawl of young players bought (and constantly loaned out) just to stop other clubs signing them.
    We nurture them, we improve them, but we rarely get to see the benefit of them in the first team as they are sold for a pittance to keep the club coffers topped up.

    A question to end with…. What’s the difference between Duchatalet and Sandgaard?

    The crazy Walloonian for all his faults at least never took us into division 2……..!

    February 24, 2022
    • Roland the uncommunicative, loony Belgium introvert. Thomas the guitar playing egotistical Danish extrovert 🤣

      February 24, 2022
  10. Mark #

    …..after the initial euphoria it’s sadly not looking so good now, is it CA?

    Why can’t we, just for once, have a ‘normal’ owner – someone who loves football, knows football, knows the EFL and has cash in the bank? It’s not too much to ask, is it?

    They seem to have it in Croydon and Bermondsey – what have we done wrong in SE7 to deserve this ongoing mess??

    February 24, 2022

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