Over land and sea
A brisk early morning walk over Battersea Bridge after staying the night at my brothers, a bus ride to Victoria Station, a tube to Liverpool Street, a train to Romford, then a cab to my mate's house in Emerson Park where I have had my 'base' for the last few nights. Then a drive halfway around the M25 to Heathrow Airport and then an airplane to Chicago. I most certainly have had plenty of time to digest the embarrassment of last night's defeat to that lot (to quote Brian Cole).
It was a hugely disappointing end to a great few days at home and although these days Charlton Athletic are not my entire life (otherwise I would not be living here) they still mean a fucking lot to me and at the moment they are getting right on my tits.
They were rightly booed off by what was a very passionate and surprisingly large Valley crowd who were still blindly trying to get behind them long after it was plainly obvious we were going out with a whimper - we had all seen this story played out too many times before.
We started so well too. HH scored with a bullet header in front of us in the Covered End and for the next 10 minutes we took the game to them and with the chant of "Who are ya"
echoing around 3 sides of the ground we looked in a different league. But then what happened?
Where was the drive, the passion, the spirit, the 'Charlton spirit', the passing? This is the last time I'm going to mention Parker, Di Canio & Jenson on here but each one had different attributes that they brought to the team. Parker's tackling and arrival late into dangerous areas, Di Canio's guile, skill and passion, Jenson's ability to run at players with the ball and all three could execute a dead ball. We have no one in the club (at least on current form) that offers us any of these skill sets. Holland's late free kick into the Jimmy Seed Stand about summed up our night. If Jenson had stepped up for that we would have had different expectations.
We were defending so deep and I too am starting to wonder about Kiely, however surely the defence cannot be helping him. Once again Perry had to be in two places at once because Fortune is just not good enough on a regular basis. He has to play above himself to get by and you can't do that week in and week out.
The midfield is my biggest worry though. Murphy was quite frankly terrible, again. Are we still blaming his performances on "missing part of pre-season training"?
Jeez, the bloody clocks go back on Sunday! Holland was poor too and in a game that meant so much to the supporters I really wanted to see him lead by example. He didn't. Unusually Stuart was anonymous. There was and hasn't been for the large majority of the season any invention, fight, pace, cutting edge or service to feet or into space for the two front men.
Jeffers is getting criticised for not running around enough and complaining and I don't blame him. He's a forward. Give him a chance and he will score. I don't ever remember Derek Hales, David Whyte and Clive Mendonca getting back into their own halves to pick up the ball or chasing diagonal 10 foot hopeful hoofs.
And my renewed patience (about the 15th time) in Lisbie is running very, very thin. Our only bright spot was Jerome Thomas. I clapped his every contribution because he had an outstanding debut in my mind. He has to play Saturday but it would not surprise me if he didn't.
Curbs is in the most testing and challenging time of his managerial career. We have relegation written all over our performances, our confidence at the moment is zip and the stats
As for Brian Cole
? I missed his comments, very funny but clearly his brain is not as big as his stomach and to be quite honest, he used to annoy the fuck out of me anyway.
Right, I'm knackered, its been a long day and I'm going to bed.