No one likes you
An interesting topic this. We haven't played The Lions for 14 seasons, yet when I was a boy we appeared to play them every chuffing season. We didn't of course, it just seemed like it.
My brother and I grew up with a Millwall supporting family living next door. The two sons and us were very close well into our early 30's, my brother is still in regular contact in fact. At school in Catford there were many Millwall fans, no one supported Palace, because they were, well nothing. I had a load of mates that were Millwall, still have a couple. I grew up with the blokes who have been behind The Lion Roars
for over 20 years. And yes, I used to occasionally go and watch them midweek in the 80's when Charlton weren't playing. But whatever division they were in, whoever they played I have always, always wanted them to lose.
Charlton fans of a certain generation each have their Millwall stories, the Old Den stories, of Paul Mortimer's magic, of Kim Grant in the snow, being 2-0 up with minutes left, being 3-0 down in 20 minutes at Sellout and a little known hero called John Hendry.
Rarely has a football club been so despised as they. And they of course would sneer at us for being little soft Charlton from down the road. 14 years should have seen a lot water flow under the bridge. I'm not sure it has.
My first ever experience of Millwall was when my Dad got kicked by a Millwall, we'll call him supporter, coming out of The Den in 1976, two days after Christmas. You don't forget those things as a 10-year old. My Dad would have been quite a bit younger than me now, and my son a year younger. My Dad never went back to The Den.
In 14 years Charlton and Millwall marched in completely different directions and moved in very different circles. Our fecklessness over three seasons has relived the possibility of once again being on a par, at least until Sunday. And that is the thing. Incredibly Millwall by the end of this weekend could be higher positioned than us in the football pyramid for the first time since the 1973/74 season, 36 years ago.
Scunthorpe United stand in their way and of course if the dreams I have had for 14 years of us playing them and stuffing them out of sight were ever likely to become reality then I'll be cheering The Iron on like crazy but supporting Charlton has never been that simple.
Memories of all sorts of good and bad fade over time but I think I am willing to forego those dreams and let that
lot and their 40-odd thousand loony tune woodwork creepers have their day in the sun. Or can I?