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Charlton Athletic 1 Cambridge United 1

A frustrating watch, but a fair result yesterday.

Lots of possession, but little to show for it, and we just weren’t able to overload attacking areas like we did at will on Tuesday.

We had all of the momentum going into the 2nd half after taking the lead on 41 minutes, but we were unable to take control of the game and despite positive possession stats Cambridge were the team with the ball in more threatening areas, and other than in injury time marshalled the game and us very well. Credit to them.

Cambridge won’t be the only team that come to The Valley and sit back and let us have the ball in non-threatening areas of the pitch. From us there just wasn’t enough movement or players willing to bust a gut to get into the box, and Stockley was again isolated.

As the season develops and other coaches and managers watch us and work on their counter plans, Ben Garner and the players will have to keep improving and better our strategies to overcome what Cambridge did to us yesterday.

It was a different time, and a higher level, but I remember watching those early games under Bob Peeters with a young Joe Gomez in defence. We were great to watch…. Until about mid-September when the whole league worked us out and Peeters wasn’t good enough to do anything about it!

The one time in the 90 minutes when we did get players in and around Stockley in the match was for the goal, when Fraser headed in after Stockley had a shot saved.

I also have to say that taking off Fraser affected us badly. I thought he was involved in a lot of good things yesterday. Although Cambridge deserved their goal it did only come about due to Inniss losing the ball.

We threw everything at them in the 7 minutes of added time but it was little too late although it was to be noted that we had three 19-year old’s on the pitch at that point underscoring the paucity of the squad.

Frustrating, but no harm in a reality check, and this is still a good start to the first month of the season.

Ben Garner: “We can play a lot better even in the first half but we go ahead. I expected more of a reaction second half for us to push on but if anything we gave them a bit of momentum with some of our decision making. We need to do things a little bit quicker and a little bit more positive, so there are areas there that we can improve for sure.”

Stats (CAFC first): Possession – 66% / 34%; Passes – 524 / 272; Accurate passes – 447 / 198; Shots (on target) – 15 (5) / 10 (4)

21 Comments Post a comment
  1. rierti #

    Who were the 3 19yr olds as Leaburn and Henry are still 18. Henry is 19 at the end of this month and Leaburn is 19 at the end of November. If the third was Clayden he is 22 in November. The academy has had a great start to the season with the U21s winning all three games and the U18s winning their first game yesterday.

    August 21, 2022
    • Thanks rierti. Got my ages all over the place there. I am surprised to see that Clayton is almost 22.

      August 21, 2022
  2. Mike #

    I believe we had 68% possession, unfortunately about 60% was in our own half! The only time we really went on our front foot for goal and made their defence work was in the last ten minutes!
    If Sangaard and Co wants to entice new supporters, we have to stop this continual sideways,backwards, sideways passing, in front of our goal getting nowhere, its tedious and totally boring and frustrating for us long standing supporters, let alone new people who are coming along for the first time and will probably never return, after witnessing that! Plus as per usual, twice they cocked it up which nearly cost us a goal. Garner has said I want a Charlton team who move forward quickley and can press the oppostion, well we pressed our own goalie more in the first half.
    Garner has got to mix it up more at home, as otherwise it will just be a repeat of his season at Swindon, where most of the home games were quite poor with quite a few losses, compared to away, where apparently they played entertaing, fast, pressing football on the break which was entertaining. At home many Swindon fans were very unhappy with the performances and started to get on his back and the players. Well considering how many poor performances we have had at home over the last several years, it won’t take long for the Charlton crowd to turn, if there isn’t a vast improvement overall, as a one off Plymouth game won’t cut the mustard!

    August 21, 2022
  3. houndal #

    It is sad to say, that even whilst still in the midst of summer and with 9 odd months left in the season, the best we can hope for is another season mired in mid table mediocrity. Maybe a cup run to keep interest alive.
    Lets be frank, Ipswich, Sheff Wed, Portsmouth and Peterbro already look head and shoulders above anyone else. Count them as nailed on for top 6.
    No doubt Wycombe and Derby will improve and of course the might that is FGR………..get my gist.
    As an example, from yesterday. Like us Ports were struggling 1-1 at home to “inferior” opposition. Difference is they could change things up in the last 15 mins and run out 3-1 winners. We could not.
    Why? because they signed the likes of Joe Pigott and Colby Bishop – ie goalscorers.
    Much as I admire what Garner is trying to do, reality is he will be gone by Xmas as Valley fans bore of this tippy tap ineffectual style of play.

    August 21, 2022
  4. John Goss #

    Yes a very frustrating afternoon, should of been out of sight before half time, quite noticeable playing Albie Morgan a playmaker at right back for some of the game. However like all football clubs we cannot win every game.
    We enjoyed the afternoon and look forward to our next match.

    August 21, 2022
    • Agree John. I’m more positive than most to our start to the season. Since Bowyer’s time we have lacked any identity and style but I can see what Garner is trying to achieve. I just wish that Sandgaard would give him the opportunity to build a more robust squad.

      August 21, 2022
  5. Chris #

    It’s not all doom and gloom everybody !!
    We need to recognise that the team has made a positive start to the season and football in our league is totally unpredictable.
    OK we had a great win on Tuesday and found the game in Saturday very difficult and so many factors come into play.
    I’m feeling very confident that Ben Garner and the backroom team will gradually improve performances……I have no doubt that other teams are aware of our progress and will prepare to make life difficult as Cambridge did.
    We can’t win every game but I feel that we won’t be beaten easily.
    Let’s all be positive !
    I’d love to see Lyall Taylor return but I fear he’s not forgiven for walking out on us,when we needed him…..we need player of his quality as he’s a good league one striker.

    August 21, 2022
    • Agree Chris. We probably would have lost that game last season.

      I can’t see Taylor coming. Money being the main reason.

      August 21, 2022
      • Chris #

        I think your right CA….the missing part of the puzzle is a partner for Jaden.

        August 21, 2022
        • Not sure if it is a partner as Garner will play with a front 3, but definitely options and depth.

          August 21, 2022
  6. houndal #

    Agreed CA we are far better off then 12 months ago.
    But is the future bright?
    From a footballing viewpoint well no of course it is not, all depending on what you are seeking.
    If it is mired in mid table mediocrity well that’s exactly what we have got.
    If, like me and presumably most, it is something greater well that is out of our reach down to TS (or Mrs TS) not backing the manager.
    To date we (TS) have not paid out 1 pound.
    Apart from wage adjustments our outlay is zilch, and you can even argue we are plus with the Pope money, however that is paid.
    Now of course I get that TS saved us from those £$%^&*ers, but without investment in the team he is just going to continue to gradually lose money, but of course it is his to lose – witness the Aneke debacle among others.
    As it stands optimism has to be tempered with reality.

    August 21, 2022
  7. LP #

    At least chris above had a go at naming this mythical beast – a striker. You all keep bleating on about it and yet none of you have any realistic suggestions. Come on – just who is this new mendonca that TS is refusing to pay for?
    Mind you chris i absolutely do not want that man back. Unless garner could handle him better than bowyer did.

    August 22, 2022
    • Chris #

      Hi LP
      I’m not sure the fans will forget his actions and I’m not sure Garner or TS would have him anf if so he would need to redeem himself by getting the goals we neeed…..goals are a great opinion changer.

      August 22, 2022
    • Norfolk Red #

      I don’t think it is necessarily a specific person to sign but just an additional mobile, speedy player to play off of Stockley’s flicks ie Rak-Sakyi. It’s the set-up that l think needs tweaking. Having said that, if Stockley were to pick up a long-term injury, with Chuks already out injured, then Charlton are totally devoid of an experienced replacement. Just as TS was rightly reminded and criticised for his mis–judged comments at the start of last season, so he will be rightly berated for not letting Garner sign an additional experienced forward this season. If that happens then this season will be a complete write-off and we are still only in August. In answer to LP’s question about who the ‘new’ striker should be, that’s more difficult to answer now that an acquisition has been left so late (less now to choose from). Portsmouth, who had a similar season to Charlton last season, appear to have learned their lessons unlike Charlton and signed some quality forwards. They got rid of Marquis and signed Bishop & Piggott. That was intelligent business imo. The ability to score lots of goals is everything if you want promotion.

      August 22, 2022
    • Rob #

      Not sure we can uncover a new Mendonca! But there are one or two out there I’d like to gamble on. Stockton (if he hasn’t gone to Fleetwood already) might be a good gamble, 12 months left and 23 goals for a lowly Morecambe last year. George Hirst if still available too. I think TS has been burnt by Aneke though as he’s injured and on a 4 yr deal, putting him off.

      August 22, 2022
  8. houndal #

    Norfolk Red, you put it much better than me.
    Portsmouth have shown how its done.

    August 22, 2022
  9. Wayne R #

    I had the misfortune to be at The Valley on Saturday and perhaps my most enjoyable moment came after about 30 minutes when I left my seat to buy a pie.I returned after a couple of minutes to see Ryan Inniss launching a 50 yard pass straight out of play. My Grandson (sitting next to me) reliably informed me that this mis-placed pass had come after messrs : Clare. Inniss, O’Connell, Morgan, Dobson and Clayden had set a CAFC club record by exchanging the most impressive total of 124 cross field passes.
    Apparently, whilst this record attempt was taking place the Cambridge strikers and Mid-fielders had been discussing between themselves what restaurant they would be dining at on their return to the University City. These clever Cambridge boys actually understood that a ‘high press’ for them was totally unnecessary because with just a little patience they new a guy in red would soon obligingly return possession of the ball to them.
    Seriously : If Gilbey exits, as per reports, then 18 senior players have gone in the ‘window’. Just 7 players have come in (10 if you include the promotions of Leaburn, Henry and Clayden). Right now we have at least 5 players injured and it won’t be too long before suspensions hit us…Clare is well on the way already!
    Having said all that my main concern on Saturday was the unwillingness of BG to change tatics. In the last 10 minutes, when we had NO wingers on the pitch he persisted with 4-3-3 asking Leaburn to play on the left wing and Payne on the right. Me thinks : square pegs and round holes!.
    The only way BG can gain any fan support if is he wins matches. If he does not then this style of football will not be accepted at The Valley.
    Yours : unimpressed

    August 22, 2022
  10. As I said after the Plymouth result our first choice team is a match for anyone in the division, the problem is when (not if) some of the Key cogs get injured or need rotating.
    Stockley is a post you can bounce stuff off, his positional play is dodgy, and his ball control is non-existent. Chucks is at best an impact sub, basically what we need is someone with a bit of pace who can play with the ball at feet and in the air.
    Just for LP some names:
    Dane Scarlett, Dan N’lundulu, Abu Kamara, Thomas Dickson-Peters, or Folarian Balogan on loan, Saido Berahino or Oumar Niasse on a free, or any number of others were available, but due to lack of something (be it funds, will, or anything else) on the Part of TS/MS/etc we failed to make the moves we needed.

    August 22, 2022
  11. Love that first paragraph Wayne 😀. Importantly what pie did you get?

    August 22, 2022
  12. Wayne R #

    Dear CA……It was a humble pie!

    August 23, 2022

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