Saturday, 21 April 2012

Charlton Athletic 2 v Wycombe Wanderers 1

As anticipated, the nigh on 18,000 Addicks fans in the disappointing 18,500 gate left the Valley celebrating the title this evening following a typical Charlton performance this season which saw us edge out a spirited Wycombe. Ched-less Sheffield United were losing before half-time at Milton Keynes and all we needed to do was win at the Valley.

We made a fine start today after taking a first-half lead from a driven low free-kick from Yann Kermorgant which beat Bull at his right-hand post. There were chances to go two-up before the break which would have opened the floodgates, but we didn't take our chances and Wycombe hit back just before half-time when Stuart Beavon wouldn't be denied and followed-up an initial effort which Hamer saved with a flying header that gave his side hope.

Wycombe came out fighting after the break and went looking for a winner for fifteen minutes before the game slowed and we came back in to it. Bradley Wright-Phillips made way after 75 minutes for Danny Haynes and this was the signal to up the ante. Haynes himself was pivotal in the winner having raced clear on the left flank to collect a ball over the top and then curled a free-kick to the back post where Yann the Destroyer was lurking. Kermorgant made the cross his own and picked out the advancing Stephens who latched on to fire home from 15 yards. 

That was the signal for the ridiculous trooping out of dozens and dozens of stewards who ringed the pitch in a confrontational move to prevent a massed pitch invasion that was never likely to happen in any event. I know the club have to do all they can to prevent fans from encroaching on the pitch but this was OTT and I was momentarily tempted to make a move down to the front to make a point. 

Once the game was over and the Sheffield United result confirmed, the players celebrated on the pitch and we were treated to a loan pitch invader who entertained us all with a spirited run as he evaded the goons for awhile. Shame, but I guess he'll be prosecuted and banned (I will happily pay his fine).

Hartlepool will be meaningless unless we can win at Preston but this season appears to have been scripted by a Charlton fan on-high, so I suspect we will be going to set a League One points record. Pitch invasions are unlikely at the Valley given the demographics and the fact that the Boys are in the Upper North, but I am guessing there might be a whole-hearted effort at the Hartlepool game.


Scoops said...

I understand the fact the club are at risk of being 'punished' if there are pitch invasions.

When I was a lad, both at the valley and selhurst, it was both customary and expected. My favourite was actually at Selhurst after we'd played QPR on the last "home" game of the season. Stevie Gritt had scored a late scorcher of a goal, the masses had assembled at various points of the ground, most of us teenagers, and had our moment on the pitch with our idols. Celebrating another season of defying the odds in the first division.

I hate the sterilisation that football has endured. Not once when I've been on the pitch at the end of a game was there any trouble. I think those who must be obeyed are stuck in the late seventies when ends were being taken.

In hard times why not let people have that little bit of release and enjoyment away from the usual stresses of 21st century everyday life.

At the Hartlepool game, I say, let's get on that pitch and bloody well celebrate!

Anonymous said...

apparently the club have been warned that if ANYONE get on the pitch at the Hartlepool game the champions presntation will be cancelled/ stopped

Be warned


Crowborough Addick said...

Dave, re young lad, he walked through tunnel along side me after the game, so he was let off with a warning. Totally unruffled by the experience by the way!

Apparently Chris Powell stated on Talksport that we had tabs on 3 or 4 new players for next season. Begs the question of who is for the chop, but better save that for another day.

Dave said...

Rick - I am sure the club can keep fans off the pitch if they want to and repeat Saturday's ring of steel. Sad though that the Nanny State is now taking this from us.

Anonymous said...

A certain ex Chelsea and Charlton defender was in my local last night, and is a good pal of powell, he said we have about 60 mil on a 5 year plan, and Charlton have all but signed 6 players for next season. One is a very high profile striker, whom we all know is top scorer in Lge 1.
We'll see eh!

Dave said...

CA- glad to hear that common sense prevailed. The priority has to be central midfield and upfront?

Dave said...

Anon - sounds good but the facts at the moment are that the first year plan would appear to have been break-even which is well out of kilter with that sort of spending. Can't see Jordan Rhodes at the Valley, although I'd love to see it. Surely a Premier League club will take a several million pound punt?

Marco. said...

Rhodes looks to me like one of those players who like being up north, in the comfort of all they've ever known.
Bring him down to the 'Smoke' and he'd be all over the place, not settling and crying off at the first opportunity.
We've fallen for these northern hotshots before -(Luke Varney and Andy Gray to name just two).
Rhodes is a decent player at league one level but I think he'd prefer a more local Championship / lower Premier club to one in the South.
Just my opinion of course etc etc.