Saturday, 13 August 2016

A work in progress

That is the most charitable thing that could be said about Russell Slade's Charlton after a 1-1 draw with Northampton Town left them just above the relegation zone in League One.

Getting off the bus to go to the Rose of Denmark, someone asked me who Charlton were playing today which suggests that Katrien's SE7 campaign has not been a resounding success. The best part of the day was meeting up with old friends. We also talked to two Cobblers supporters.

It was quite a surprise to see Brian Cole working again as pitch announcer. It will be recalled that the lost the job after a game against the Glaziers in which referred to them as 'Crystal Pal****.'

Commenting on the Bury match, Russell Slade said in the programme that we created opportunities but snatched at them and didn't work the goalkeeper enough. That's how it was in the first half today. All of our shots were from outside the box and, not surprisingly, were either off target or straight at the keeper. The Cobblers went ahead on 16 minutes when a decent cross was followed by a decent header from Revell who for some reason was not been properly marked. It will be good to get Bauer back (he was on the bench).

Ricky Holmes was being constantly barracked by the Cobblers fans. Perhaps this put him off a bit, but he has good pace.

We looked better in the second half, particularly after Lookman came on. Andrew Crofts forced Smith into a smart, low save to top his strike around the post, before Nicky Ajose fired just wide after turning neatly. He should really have scored. An assist from Ajose allowed Johnnie Jackson to level the score on 57 minutes.

Jordan Botaka looked lively when he came on. We pressed hard in the last ten minutes, but couldn't find the back of the net. Lookman saw his free kick turned away in the last minute.

I was impressed with Konsa who showed some nice touches.

There were no red or yellow cards and Darren England had a decent game.

Russell Slade has said that he wants to strengthen the central midfield before the transfer window closes. This is our main weakness at the moment: Manager's verdict

Football League Paper scores

Rudd 6 (looked competent to me); Solly 7 (worked tirelessly); Pearce, 6; Konsa, 6 (I would have given a higher score); Fox, 6 (usual mix of good and bad); Foley, 5 (subbed by Lookman on 60, 6, I would have given more); Jackson, 7; Holmes, 7 (subbed by Botaka on 67); Magennis, 6 (subbed by Novak on 80); Ajose 6.

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