Come in No.4, your time is up!

Down to the refurbished Earl of Warwick last night, and managed to get served far more quickly than usual for a Charlton game. The pub did not seem as packed as in previous years but there were still plenty of fans in the ground.

As is usual with the Welling friendly, the first job is to work out who is who.

The public address system was not too efficient (apart from later in the game when the announcer continually asked the ‘boys behind the goal’ to get back over the fence), and I spent the game gradually identifying the players, although I didn’t manage at all to find out the number 8 – clarified by the official site today as Dean Sinclair, a trialist formerly with Barnet.

So, how did they do … Randolph was fine but had to go off early due to an injury. Replaced by Elliot who had a reasonable game, although to be honest, he didn’t have that much to worry about.

In defence, Moo2 who was reasonable but nothing special, McCarthy who I thought was not yet ready but did show signs that he will be strong for us, and Chrissy being what Chrissy always is – dependable and enthusiastic.

Souleymane had a great game throughout and I was very impressed with his attitude from start to finish – let’s hope the talk from his agent is rubbish and he will be staying – he could be a very important player for us this season.

Martin Christensen never stopped running the entire game, probably deserved a goal, but perhaps let himself down by being a little too greedy occasionally – overall, I think we have a good player here.

Todorov didn’t look match fit, but if he can stay injury-free, we have a player with that bit extra who can help us fight our way back to the Premiership.

Varney was a handful all game, and definitely deserved his goal … will now be interesting to see him at a higher level, as it will be for Chris Dickson who scored a wonderful goal from a very acute angle.

Jerome got stuck in and was the subject of a few heavy tackles from the Wings, but overall he did well.

Gibbs and Arter came on in the 2nd half, and both looked promising as did Pedersen. Rhys Coleman, who I have never heard of, looked like a reasonable prospect. Josh Wright also played but I do not recall too much about him.

Ohhhh … and there was a player at number 4 … one that I am sure we haven’t signed yet… Pards, we DO trust in you … but DO NOT sign this total waster !!!!!!!!!

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No Nicky and Algarve Wednesdays

Looking forward to the Welling game tonight … and meeting my mates before the game in the Guy, which judging by the weather at the moment may be where most Charlton fans stay for the whole game!

According to the official site, Pards is not going to make the same mistake as Dowie last season and will be taking a 'proper' team along. So it seems like we will get the chance to see Luke Varney, Svetoslav Todorov, Paddy McCarthy and Yassin Moutaouakil. Unfortunately, it looks like Nicky is going to the Tooting game … such a pity, Welling would have given him a good opportunity to make his mark with the fans … I am sure he would have got a bit of stick, but judging by his recent comments, he would have responded positively. I must admit I am beginning to change my mind about him … I know players have to say the right thing when they join a new club but he seems pretty genuine about it.

OK, I’ll start it now’ ‘England, England’s number One !!!’.

Also a pity that we will apparently not see Iwelumo as he is in the Tooting squad.

But it looks like Chrissy will play… should be a great reception for him. And will we manage to see Cory Gibbs? Tipped by our fans director to be player of the season!

And next Wednesday night should also be a lot of fun. I am off to the Algarve and intend to spend the night in Floyd’s bar, the only Charlton theme bar in Continental Europe! Wednesday is quiz night so hopefully a good chance to relax and have a few drinks with Perry.

According to, my domain name is only worth $21 ! Maybe I should change the name and try to get a quick profit by re-selling … although 'Charlton Athletic' is only worth $11 ! 'Ian Brown' gets $31, but I’m sure that’s been used ;-) Just tried ‘London', that gets $121, but I won’t get away with that one! Found it, I can get $161 for ‘Dave’!!!

On a different subject I went to see Die Hard 4.0 last night. If you want a couple of hours suspending belief with a great action film, then this is for you … I must admit that I enjoyed it. Bruce Willis may not be the world’s greatest actor but he is good for these, primarily non-speaking, parts.

And before I forget, go out and buy the new Chemical Brothers album – superb!

… and download the Glosoli video by Sigur Ros from iTunes, it’s one of the best videos ever.

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I don't believe it!

Weaver !!!!

This is ridiculous - the history between us and Weaver is well known. OK, some are saying we should treat it as just that, history, it's in the past. Well, I can't do that.

It just fills me with concern ... if he has a couple of bad games the crowd will quickly turn against him - this does nothing to lift the team.

If he does not perform consistently well at a high-level from the beginning, he will not be able to convert most of the fans and that helps no-one.

I like the majority of Pard's signings and continue to trust in him - I sincerely hope he proves me wrong ... and whatever happens, you won't find me booing any players ... but you can be sure that many will if this does not work out.

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One out, all out

Returned to Frankfurt yesterday and it seems that every few months I have to leave even earlier to get through the Blackwall Tunnel. A couple of years ago, it was sufficient to leave my house at 6.30 to get a flight at 8.00, but due to heavier traffic this changed to 6.15 and then eventually 6.00. With the ridiculous closure of the contraflow system in the tunnel, I had to start leaving at 5.45 ... and let's be honest, the closure is nothing to do with safety, it is all about introducing the congestion charge. Now we have the increased security at airports, I had to leave at 5.30. However, security was not as bad as I had expected ... my cab received a cursory check by the police on the way into City airport, and the driver was still able to drop me off at the front of the airport. From what I heard, it was not so easy an hour or so later when the traffic was a lot heavier ... a number of people were unable to get too close to the airport and walked the remaining distance.

Will be interesting on the way back later in the week to see the situation then.

And in Germany today ... there is a train strike! I pointed out to my German colleagues that you don't see this sort of thing in the UK nowadays ... neglecting to mention the recent postal strike ;-)

Fortunately, I only have a 5 minute walk to work from my hotel so has not affected me today ... but the office is very empty, hence the opportunity to catch up with my blog!

The Charlton clear-out finally happened over the weekend, and to be honest, there are very few surprises. There seems to be a difference of opinion on some Charlton message boards and blogs as to whether or not some of the players should have been retained, but I have no real problems with the changes.

JFH - never delivered anything near his potential and no loss ... in fact, a big gain as we no longer have his wage bill.
Talal - I would have liked to keep Talal but, as far as I am aware, he had already made it clear that he did not want to drop a division - good luck to him and I hope he gets a good move.
Myhre - I actually thought he had gone in January, but it does leave us rather short in this area! I assume a replacement is planned!
Lisbie - about time! Earned a lot of money for scoring 3 goals against Liverpool. Having said that, I hope he finally does realise his (apparent) potential at his new club ... rumoured to be the Gills.
Nathan Ashton, Rurik Gislason, Alistair John and Myles Weston - I don't know enough about these to make much of a comment - I guess it's down to, 'Trust in Pards'.

A number of sites again speculating that we are linked to Freddie Eastwood - as long as we don't get screwed on the price, I think this is a good move. I would prefer him to Ellington with whom we are also linked.

The home friendly with Jorge Costa's team, Braga, has been announced - I'm looking forward to getting back down the Valley for this - it seems like a long time. The annual match at Welling is next Wednesday and thankfully I will be in the UK to see this ... although to be honest, it's more an opportunity to catch up with mates in the Guy Earl of Warwick ... incidentally I was in the renovated Guy at the weekend and spoke to the new owners. Business is not that robust at the moment, but they hope to have a lot of customers for the Charlton game ... I reassured them that this would be the case!

Incidentally, Iberian Valley has come up with a very amusing blog recently. Amazing to see how many Charlton bloggers we have out there, including a number of new ones such as myself.

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