Friday, November 20, 2009

The Sun Shines Out of Your Behind…

After such a resounding win last weekend in the first ever game against MK Dons, Charlton hope to keep on winning with a visit to Yeovil for the first time in their league history. The Glovers are a nice team, and one that many look out for results due to their famous FA Cup exploits in years gone by. Now they are a league team, and have done very well since joining the league a few years back. Yeovil are actually my wife’s parents nearest league club, though my in-laws love remains with other League One rivals Norwich.

Phil Parkinson will want to keep the momentum going, trying to create a gap between the Addicks in second place, and the chasing pack, which includes the Norfolk team, amongst others. Last weeks worry that a defeat would see Charlton drop a couple of places may have spurred the team on, and a loss this week could also see Charlton out of the top two for the first time this season. That will not be an option, hopefully, as Charlton do look like they may have too much for the Huish team.

Even without the injured Rob Elliot, Carl Ikeme and Darren Randolph are decent goalkeepers, although both have different attributes. Ikeme is much taller but for some reason looks vulnerable under the high ball, while Randolph is a great shot-stopper. Parky seems to be favouring the on-loan player, so I expect to see him in between the sticks once more, with Randolph on the bench.

Frazer Richardson tweaked his hamstring again last week, so he’s definitely out of this match; that leaves a straight choice between Elliot Omozusi and Grant Basey to replace him. If Basey, a second half sub for Richardson last week, comes in, then Kelly Youga will switch effortlessly across to the right back slot. For continuity, I would pick Basey, with Omozusi on the bench as cover.

Sam Sodje will look to continue his great form of late, and Christian Dailly will be along side him, completing the back four.

In midfield, last week’s "experiment" of moving Nicky Bailey back inside from the wing was a resounding success, so the central four of Jose Semedo, Bailey, Lloyd Sam and Therry Racon is likely to be unchanged.

In attack, a lot depends on whether Deon Burton has had his hernia operation yet; I was certainly hoping he had by now so that his three week recuperation covered the vacant cup weekend next Saturday and he was fit by the time that Dave Mooney goes back to Reading (if he does), but no news of this has leaked out so it may not have happened. Akpo Sodje is a ready made replacement for Burton when he does go under the knife, but Mooney will definitely play after opening his scoring for the club last Saturday.

This is the side I expect Parky to send out in Somerset –

Carl Ikeme
Kelly Youga
Sam Sodje
Christian Dailly
Grant Basey
Jose Semedo
Nicky Bailey
Therry Racon
Lloyd Sam
Dave Mooney
Deon Burton

Subs from Randolph, Omozusi, Llera, Spring, Stavrinou, Wagstaff, Holden, McKenzie, Tuna, Sodje A.

Yeovil themselves are on a nice roll at present, with just one defeat in their last eight games; their home record is average, and they have yet to play any of the major sides in this division at Huish yet, so Charlton must fancy their chances. Yeovil’s squad is bolstered by three Spurs youngsters who are all on loan, with striker Okobi the pick of the bunch. Ex-Ipswich youngster Dean Bowditch has just come back from injury and will also be a threat.

Pedro45 is confident that the 1500 travelling fans will have good reason to sing with their cider tomorrow, and is predicting a 2-0 victory. Yeovil will huff and puff but, in the weather we are having, should get blown down by Charlton’s better skill, greater experience, and solid teamwork.

My one-to-watch in this game is going to be Lloyd Sam. Lloyd looked like he was getting back near his best last week and it’s about time too. He has so much to offer but sometimes cannot translate that into match winning opportunities due to lack of decent ball, double-marking, or apparent lack of desire. When on form, he is simply a match-winner in this league, and I’m hoping that we see him taking on and beating people as we know he is very capable of. He really should be scoring plenty of goals at this level too, and last weeks clinical strike was an indication of how good and dangerous he can be.

I’m looking forward to a new ground to visit tomorrow and another Addicks win; last weeks 5-1 win must not be a flash in the pan and Parky needs to get the team in the same frame of mind once more. We should be beating teams like Yeovil, so let’s just get the job done and move on to Tuesday’s match.

Up the Addicks!

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