No Parkinson signs
So should Parky have been rewarded with a contract extension then? I personally think it was a well timed bonus for Parky despite the obvious drop in form. The board have always, since 2006, had faith in the man and I suspect they feel that he handled himself very well throughout a very difficult and uncertain summer. Add to this that the more veteran board members feel PP is 'more Charlton' then I think you have the answer.
I suspect Richard Murray, and maybe Derek Chappell had privately given Parkinson until this point of the season to weigh up their options and consider the manager's position. He passed and perhaps, a small perhaps the board wanted to avoid any 'Curbs coming back' or 'Parkinson for Reading' headlines causing an unwanted distraction to the season's goal, promotion. Money became available, a couple of younger players have been recognised with pay rises and so now has their boss.
A third of the season gone but the table hides some growing concerns doesn't it? Where has the spark gone, the domination of midfield, the exciting counter-attacking, the confidence? Questions Parkinson with his new contract needs to answer and soon otherwise we are going to undo all of the good work that started at Sparrows Lane on warmer days.
We are going to lose games. We lost 13 in 74/75 including a thrashing at lowly Aldershot and 12 in 80/81, which included a 4-0 stuffing at Chester and eventually relegated Colchester did the double over us. I looked at Parkinson's Colchester promotion camapaign and they only won one of the first eight games. He is proven at this level and despite the paucity of the squad, it contains some of the best in the division. However he will be looking for some of the characters to step out of the shadows. No time like Sunday eh?
Yes I am a little anxious but then again I know how fickle I am, a couple of wins and I will be back on the straight and narrow. Losing games inspires good teams, and Leeds' last two games have underlined that.
A very simplistic view and mine is to go back to what was working at the beginning of the season. 4-4-1-1. Bring Shelvey back, god he must be chomping at the bit. Play to Burton strengths (unless we allow him to sort his hernia out) by allowing him to hold play up with his back to goal and enable Racon, Sam and Bailey to flourish in a more flexible midfield five. Funny, well not funny at all, that it's the players who were, well excellent in the first nine games - Bailey, Sam, Racon, Burton - who are now the most off form. Plan A Parky, that is why it is called Plan A.
Finally before I change a nappy, great result for the youth's tonight at home to Gillingham
in the first round of the FA Youth Cup. Good inspiration to the first teamers I hope.