Saturday, March 15, 2008
It's All Over Now, Baby Blue
Ipswich Town 2 Charlton Athletic 0
Charlton predictably lost this game, to a goal in each half, even though they didn't play at all poorly it seems. For the second time recently, a harmless cross apparently floated over Nicky Weaver and into the net off the far post, and early in the second half, a terrific drive from the edge of the area flew in - shades of Burnley here?
For the Addicks, McCarthy hit the bar with a header from a first half corner, and Lita, Ambrose, and Thomas all went close later in the match; a penalty was also not forthcoming when Lita was pulled down inside the area.
But the most frustrating thing for me is that this league was there for the taking.
Charlton have slipped to ninth place, a drop of four places, and have scored just one goal in three matches. But above them at the start of the day, Bristol City lost at home to Plymouth (who go sixth), Watford missed their second potential winning penalty in a week, and drew with Stoke (who go top), while West Brom - Charlton's opponents next Friday evening - were stuffed 4-1 at home by Leicester. Watford and West Brom also had a player sent off.
If only Charlton had put together some sort of mediocre form over the last two months, we would undoubtedly have been sitting pretty and us with smiles on our faces, even if we had lost today. Holding on to the leads against Bristol City and Watford, and reversing defeats to Scunthorpe, Preston, Colchester and Blackpool would have been enough, and even if we hadn't won maximum points from all of those games mentioned where we should have, we would still be right there in the mix.
With a tough game against the Baggies on Friday, followed by another home match against a Wolves team just two points behind the Addicks but with two games in hand, the omens are not good. More worryingly is that other teams are hitting form at just the right time - Hull won 5-0 to go fifth, Ipswich's win today will have lifted them, and even Burnley are not out of the mix, just a point shy of Charlton in tenth (even though they were beaten comprehensively by Wolves today).
Sure, we as fans can be upbeat and confident, but that is obviously not permeating itself onto the pitch.
The time has now come for Alan Pardew to earn his corn - we don't need excuses anymore. Bad luck cannot be blamed, even though we are having none at present; these things even out over the season.
Pards has a big enough squad to pick the right side to win any game in this division; with so many players to pick from, he - and the team - ought to be doing better. Why we are not doing better can realistically only be answered by the management at the club.
Pardew will be judged on where we end up in this league table come May 4th. It is no good saying we can still do this or do that - we need evidence now please...
Much as I believe that we can still do it. I just don't believe that we will. Today’s result only finished off our realistic chances because we have not been good enough all season. Sadly I believe that your headline is correct.
Good article but unlike you, I have seen no evidence at all this season that we have a team good enough to win promotion.
Where has it all gone wrong? Pards seems to have lost his way a little with his choice of both formation and players somewhat erratic. The side clearly need a lift though it is not obvious where that will come from. Perhaps the return of Bougherra will help. I think he's been a big miss. Trouble is the next three games are massive; WBA and Wolves at home, then Plymouth away. We are now in last chance saloon so let's hope he is ready soon.Post a Comment