A good point earned today thanks to the left peg of Ademola Lookman, on what could be his last appearance as a Charlton player.
Not the most positive of openings to a post celebrating a second half comeback and a last minute equaliser but the way we’re being run at the moment I won’t be at all surprised if he goes before Wednesday night.
But first, let’s go back in time a week or so and celebrate a fine win at Walsall. Two goals from Nicky Ajose gave us all three points despite, I assume, them being possibly the two worst finishes of his entire career.
The first hit him on the chest, the second he somehow managed to blunder across the line with a combination of both feet and a fairly big slice of luck.
Not that I care a great deal as the most important thing is that we won the game and he got two goals to his name.
A bit of a goof for the Walsall goal courtesy of Declan Rudd who I’m sure would (excuse the pun) hold his hands up to that one, but he redeemed himself with a couple of excellent saves late on to ensure we took all three points.
Being beaten from long range isn’t something we haven’t seen before though – Ben Hamer used to let goals in from that distance all the time !!
The big mid-week news was Tareiq Holmes-Dennis move to Huddersfield Town for an ‘undisclosed’ fee, which we’ve since found out was probably £400,000 plus some kind of sell-on clause.
A lot of general grumpiness ensued on social media with the club once again at fault but by the sounds of it THD wanted out and Slade was happy to let him go.
Slado has previously stated he wanted players at the club who want to stay and fight for it, so no surprise then that THD was allowed to go.
To be honest, we have to trust that Slado knows his stuff and he said in the week that THD wasn’t winning the battle for starting left back spot ahead of Morgan Fox, who, defensively at least has been doing alright, so good luck THD, might see you next year in the Championship (if you get a game ?!)
One last thing …. THD’s greatest (only ?) moment, I give you once again, the Barry Bannon.
And so on to today. A good opening was seeing this season’s first ‘ringer’ – fat Tony Hadley, before a pretty good start I thought, although the heat of the sun bearing down on us might have affected my vision a little bit. (He doesn’t really look that much like Tony Hadley)
A pretty cagey affair got to half time with us probably just shading it, Jason Pearce heading just wide while Chris Solly was required to stretch all of his five foot three to clear off the line.
Disappointing to see Jacko go off after twenty minutes (with a tight hammy apparently) but good to see Patrick Bauer get back on the pitch – despite his desperately poor distribution (we were in red Patrick by the by.)
Half time came and went with brow mopping in the covered end the interval activity of choice and then we got done down the left and Gary Madine was the Bolton jonny-on-the-spot to force it home and put the unbeaten league leaders ahead.
Just one thing before I move on – the half time crossbar challenge is coming – watch this space ?!
What do you mean it’s coming ? It’s a crossbar challenge, one person, a ball, somewhere near the goal – job done.
Watch this space ? What for exactly ? Get on with it !
Anyway, a bit disappointing to concede so early as we had had much of the more positive possession in the first period and defended well but second half I didn’t think we had much of a clue going forward, the majority of our attacks being long clipped passes to the head of Josh Magennis.
Despite his best efforts, knockdowns / flick-ons weren’t falling to Ajose, who needs to be getting the ball in the box (chances for a finisher not being created – written that here a few times over the last few seasons) and we were SO narrow, with zero width down either side until Lookman came on.
Well, I say until Lookman came on but he only stayed wide for five minutes before moving further and further inside.
Obviously I can’t complain too much because he did score the goal but with both him and Ricky Holmes looking like they both had been given a ‘free role’, at least one of them had to take the decision to pull wide – but neither did.
Ezri Konsa was very good again at centre half alongside a very sturdy Jason Pearce, and continued to do well when pushed to right back to replace Solly who had moved into midfield, but he was stuffed for an out ball up the line with no-one in the fifty-plus yards ahead of him.
Just my opinion but Holmes was excellent wide(ish) against Shrewsbury and I really think we missed that today.
A few times he really got at the Bolton defence, but going down the middle led him into areas of congestion that he couldn’t extricate himself from, whereas if he’d been wide he would have had more space to work in.
So, a point against the leaders isn’t bad, but back to winning ways is imperative next time out.
Three signings due maybe this week – I shan’t be holding my breath mind !!
One last thing – and just a little bug-bear if that be the phrase, but don’t take a free programme from the CARD distributors – and then chuck it on the floor.
If you don’t want one – don’t take one !!
Not sure about Tuesday night’s game v Southampton but will be up at Colchester United Weston Homes for the proper U23 league match on Monday afternoon.
C’mon you Reds !!