Friday, December 29, 2006

Prawn Balls

"A warm welcome to the Valley for this Premiership fixture against Aston Villa. If you have your match programme ready I'll run through the teams, beginning with our visitors:

No. 1 Prawn Crackers

No. 3 Vegetarian Spring Rolls

No. 6 Bang Bang Chicken

No. 9 Barbecue Spare Ribs

(that's enough Chinese take away references - Ed.)

It would be easy to lapse into lazy stereotypes upon hearing the news that China captain Zheng Zhi has signed for the Addicks on loan with a view to a permanent deal. It would be too obvious to ask whether several varieties of dog meat are now available at the Sparrows Lane training ground (the lads are fuming apparently but Reidy said he'll try anything once). It would be repugnant meanwhile to ask whether he owns a cat called Chairman Miaow, and so I won't.

But seriously it's an exciting signing for us and whilst a cynic might argue the club perhaps has one eye on selling more shirts in Shanghai (I don't think they've sold any yet - Ed.), that's sits ok with me. You don't become captain of the football team of a nation of 1.3 billion people unless you can play a bit. Then again, if Pards describes him as a 'one in a million' player then bear in mind it means there is another 1,300 just like him.

The final match of our annus horriblis brings to an end a sorry period for the club that saw four managers/head coaches, just eight Premiership wins and none of them away from home. With the appointment of Pards and the January window just days away, let's hope 2007 brings more cheer for the Addicks even if we have to drop a division to acquire it.

Our final opponents in 2006 began the season in style but some of the initial euphoria over the appointment of Martin O'Neill has been replaced by the realism that he can only do so much with a limited squad. Indeed one could argue that just 5 wins in 20 Premiership matches actually represents a poor return on the investment in O'Neill's reputation. Given the likely millions he will be offered in January, we are perhaps playing Villa again at the optimal time.

I struggled to find any mention on the club website of Killer's (KillerWatch© -£451) charity bet for the Fulham game, but against injury-hit Villa he is opting for a 1-0 Addicks victory, a little ambitious perhaps given our defensive frailties. Pards will have had a tough job raising the lads after the Fulham game, and until January arrives he continues to have to disguise mutton as lamb (with broccoli). As a result I will suggest only another point thus further stopping the rot, but ultimately not enough if we are serious about avoiding relegation. NY Addick predicts Charlton 1 (Bent D), Villa 1 (Petrov, if fit)


Post a Comment

<< Home