Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Coventry preview

There was something about Saturday's defeat which somehow felt worse than the eleven that had preceded it.

Perhaps it was the cautious optimism that improved displays versus QPR and Southampton had generated, combined with the fact that a mediocre Blackpool side seemed very beatable, on paper at least.

Unfortunately I think we are now all rapidly reassessing notions of 'beatability' at the current time, with dire implications for the rest of the season.

Something has gone very badly wrong at the club, and it now feels like a vicious circle of poor results and demotivation, that threatens to eat upon itself until relegation is assured. The circle needs to be broken.

I think the Board needs to stop procrastinating, and either formally give the manager's job to Parkinson, or very swiftly ratchet up the search for a new manager.

As I've noted before, the near-term results should have little bearing on Parkinson's suitability for the role. The quality of decisions is judged at the time they are made, not with the benefit of hindsight.

Either way, I do sense that the club will remain 'in flux' until some permanence is brought to the manager's position, and all the while, the team heads seemingly inexorably towards League One.

I still don't buy the argument that the squad is fundamentally 'not good enough' (to survive). Only two of the eleven that started at Blackpool do not have relatively recent Premiership experience (Bailey and Semedo).

What they desperately need is some belief and organisation. Until then the ten or so wins we need to stay up will remain a mere pipe dream.

The last time Charlton finished a season bottom of a division was in the 2nd Division of 1979/80, accumulating an embarrassing 22 points from 42 games (equivalent to about 31 points in today's money).

With two new injuries to be concerned with, Parkinson's options are extremely limited against a Coventry side consolidating a position in lower midtable.

The Sky Blues were finally relegated from the top flight in 2000/01, after 34 consecutive years, a phenomenal and often overlooked achievement. They also famously lifted the FA Cup in 1987.

Since then, they have achieved Championship finishes of 11th, 20th, 12th, 19th, 8th, 17th and 21st, escaping relegation last season despite a 4-1 defeat at The Valley on the final day.

Iain Dowie took over in Feb 2007, and enjoyed a degree of success before a poor run in early-2008 saw him dismissed by the new consortium led by Ray Ranson. Chris Coleman was installed in his stead after a brief sojourn in Spain, but has managed only to stabilise not to push on.

Given we have managed only a single win in our last 15 games, it is difficult to garner much optimism for any fixture currently. However if there is anything beneficial about finally reaching the bottom, it's of course that the only way (until May at least) is up.

Perhaps they can now play as if they have nothing to lose, rather than fearing that they will. Cranie will no doubt start if passed fit, but if not, it would give Parky a chance to perhaps pair Burton and fellow loanee Waghorn upfront.

When Burton was signed, Parky implied he was an alternative to Andy Gray, not a complement, yet they have started together twice. With no goals forthcoming, the pace of McLeod or the aforementioned Waghorn may be preferred.

I think Parkinson will line them up as follows: Elliot, Cranie, McEveley, Fortune, Hudson, Bailey, Holland, Bouazza, Gillespie, Burton, McLeod. Subs: Christie, Semedo, Moutaouakil, Gray, Sam.

NY Addick predicts Charlton 2 (Burton, Bouazza), Coventry 1 (Mifsud). Tickets sold: 20,088.


At 1:15 PM, Blogger Floyd said...

You are out on a limb there NYA - a win and a crowd of +20,000 to boot! I know you weren't at Bloomfield Road so the blinkers really can be excused BUT we just don't have two goals in us at the moment, 1 at best. Don't forget BTFC had only won twice at home all season till we appeared. 20 minutes into the game their crowd but were getting on there backs. I really want us to do what you say they will do but the best I can hope for tonight is 1-1. Enjoy the fun from a distance. I shall be watching the BBC live updates on the web just like you tonight so hold on tight...it won't be pretty (to quote Ketts)

At 1:31 PM, Anonymous newyorkaddick said...

I now predict 'tickets sold', not the actual attendance (which I suspect will be little more than 15,000 given the weather and team's form).

At 6:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hudson 1st goal and a comfortable 2-0 victory for the super reds.

At 8:57 PM, Blogger Floyd said...

Noted NYA - 0-1 at half time, Ketts has texted to say more of the same. Pretty, no product, fizzling out before 45 minutes are up, things are really bad right now, do I take up the offer for a free ticket on Monday night?

At 8:58 PM, Blogger Floyd said...

Blimey - just noted a Burton penalty, what on earth is going on?

At 11:29 PM, Blogger sw said...

Charlton caretaker boss Phil Parkinson:

"All I'll say is that (chairman) Richard Murray and the board have worked tooth and nail to get this club in the position it is in. We have the responsibility as a group to keep it there, but it's fairly obvious change needs to happen."

from the BBC match report tonight... aha that'll be a SAP blaming someone else technique then... poor old RM & The Board al their fault!!!


ps Think someone needs some media training!!

At 9:22 AM, Blogger Suze said...

Having dragged one son there last night, (my husband doesn't like this little, middle aged female going to the big, bad Valley on her own(I put that down to him being a Liverpool fan)), the words comfortable, victory and reds in the same sentence were never going to happen! But, I would have liked to have seen scrapped, passion and want in there, but they were missing too. I'm hoping that next Monday they'll do something more, even if it's because the loanees want to show their worth with a view to their saleability. They didn't show it last night.

I read somewhere someone say...the only way is up now!? If we keep getting that performance...the only way is out. I agree with you NYA, we need a permanence and stability within the club, very soon or it'll be too late.


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