Wednesday, February 13, 2008

No Goals - Three Views

Sheffield Wednesday 0 Charlton Athletic 0

Not much to add to any other reports of this game, although I haven’t had a chance to read any as work is a nightmare at the moment.

I listened to the game on the radio, and interrupted that with the in-game SSN reports. It was interesting to compare the opinions on both channels, and that of the highlights shown on SSN after ten o’clock.

Radio London obviously had a southern bias, with the referee and in particular the linesman being useless. It was strange how attacking throw ins by Greg Halford seemed to end up with Showunmi on the half way line, but that’s commentary for you! Although the home team seemed to have the best chances, with Nicky Weaver making three very good saves by all accounts, it was a close game, and Matt Holland did hit the post with a drive from ten yards or so in the first half. Luke Varney did get the ball in the net in the second half but he was adjudged to be just offside by the linesman who apparently got every decision wrong. Oh, and Paddy McCarthy was fantastic!

The reporter at the ground for Sky needed to be woken up every time the studio went to him for his opinion. This report balanced the Radio view and was full of northern negativity – Wednesday were always the better side; Weaver had kept Charlton in the game, etc etc. Varney was rightly flagged offside apparently…hmmm.

Then you see the highlights and it was pretty much all Charlton bar one very good save from Weaver. Holland’s shot was unlucky, and other chances came and went. The Varney “goal” was a bit too quick for me to replay, so I couldn’t tell if he was on or off – maybe others can confirm?

The other things to note from the match were that Kelly Youga was picked upon apparently, and after being punched, and booked for receiving it, he was withdrawn by Alan Pardew to ensure that he was not sent off (and consequently a five game ban!), and that Lee Cook made his debut for the out of sorts Lloyd Sam after an hour. Cook almost set up a wining finish but it wasn’t to be.

Sadly, we were not helped by other results, with Scunthorpe losing to a late goal by Bristol City, and Southampton failing to claw back the three goal lead they gave Stoke. Watford hung on with ten men to win 1-0 and continue to head the league, so it is the leaders we will face on Saturday at The Valley.

That game now takes on huge significance, and could be one of the defining moments if Charlton are to win automatic promotion out of this division.

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