Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Two on the Bounce?

Charlton go for consecutive away victories for the first time since the start of last season when taking on Bolton tonight.

The team will be under pressure throughout, and many of the new signings are not ready or available, so the team is likely to show few changes from the one that beat Portsmouth ten days ago.

The Magic Boogie-man is injured and the Song-ster away playing for his country; Zheng Zhi has travelled though and may make the bench. Injured key-trio Young, Reid and Darren Bent are all reported still to be out, though Reid may also make a substitute appearance.

This is the side I expect Alan Pardew (above) to send out into the Reebok tonight -

Scott Carson
Talal El Karkouri
Hermann Hreidersson
Souleymane Diawara
Ben Thatcher
Amady Faye
Matt Holland
Bryan Hughes
Jerome Thomas
Dennis Rommedahl
Marcus Bent

Subs from Myrhe, Randolph, Sankofa, Zhi, Hasselbaink, Sam, Reid, Ambrose.

I would play the Moroccan at right back, as his height may be better used than Sankofa's. Apart from that, I doubt we'll see many other changes this time round.

Pedro45's score prediction is a 3-1 defeat; I really cannot see us holding Bolton on the form they showed last weekend at the Emirates stadium. Unless they are tired, or rest players, or Charlton's form really has risen a notch or three since Pards took over, then the two previous wins against Bolton this season are all we can hope for.

The crucial news from today, and tonight, is not with this game, or result, because realistically anything from it would be a bonus, but with the transfer window. The biggest step in survival this season would be not selling Darren Bent today, to West Ham or anyone else. Richard Murray has said that plenty of clubs want to be involved when that time does come round, as it invariably will, but in the mad last day scramble, the best price will not be gained. I say hold on to him and if we fail to stay up, let us auction Dazza off properly at season end. Therefore, my one to watch is going to be Mr Murray; I hope he enjoys the game, and once over, he turns his mobile phone off, and gets in the car for the long drive back down the M6 and M1 with some lovely classical music belting out. He can answer Curbs desperate texts and voicemails tomorrow morning with a "sorry, too late" reply!

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