Saturday, March 14, 2009

Wolves preview

After gaining a creditable point at Reading on Tuesday night, the Addicks face the formidable task of winning at leaders Wolves in order to keep any realistic hope of survival alive.

The fact that Charlton have now secured three consecutive draws from tricky away fixtures, is more of a frustration than an encouragement.

The way I see it is simple. I've never really bought into the idea that the players are 'not good enough'.

Instead we have a lot of good players (albeit not all 38 of them used so far), but no sense of team spirit or organisation.

Thus it's inevitable that on occasion, they will function to a sufficient degree to earn some surprising points, but the general trend will remain negative. We must be a punter's nightmare.

Back in July, I wrote that the sale of Chris Iwelumo represented, " great loss given his obvious limitations." Nothing that he has done since changes this view, despite the natural conclusion otherwise.

We received a decent fee for a player signed a year earlier for free, and his scoring record for Charlton was no better than Nicky Bailey's (from midfield).

Moreover, having begun his Wolves career in explosive fashion, he has not scored since November.

He ended last season in similar fashion, scoring only once between 15 Dec and the end of the season. When being tall and trying hard are your only attributes, it's not hard for teams to remove your threat once they cotton onto it.

Instead, it's the failure of his various replacements as pure 'target men' which have hurt us. Andy Gray's season threatened to get going, but was hampered by injuries and personal issues. Deon Burton has meanwhile not scored from open play, whilst Tresor Kandol is a Leeds player, and a desperate throw of the dice.

Phil Parkinson's team selection at Reading did not bring many surprises, though I must confess I did not expect to see Zheng Zhi start a Charlton match again.

I'd like to see some youngsters being given a proper chance with an eye on next season, though I suppose he would claim the Reading result ruins my argument (it doesn't).

I think he'll line up as follows: Elliot, Butterfield, Youga, Ward, Hudson, Bailey, Spring, Zheng, Soares, Ambrose, Kandol. Subs: Randolph, Holland, Dickson, Burton, Sam.

NY Addick predicts: Wolves 2 (Ebanks-Blake 2), Charlton 0. Att: 23, 882.


At 12:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear NYA,
whilst I agree with 95% of what you've written -Kandol being a desperate throw of the dice- is the other 5%. What I have seen of his performances at home I've been pleasantly surprised- those high aimless balls punted forward were flicked on accurately by him , also a open goal which Varney would have fluffed was tucked away. If there are any funds left at the end of the season
I think a modest amount would be well spent on Kandol. If...


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