Dave was otherwise indisposed so you have me for today's match report.Such is my ambivalence towards our club at the moment, that I haven't bothered making the 150 mile round trip to a game in almost a month. Today I felt different and wanted to attend not so much for the football but more to show my support for the cause and to protest against those that would apparently seek to strip Charlton Athletic of it's dignity, it's heritage and history, it's fanbase, it's playing squad and all else we hold dear with regard to this great club.
I didn't make the first protest, the M23 and M25 saw to that, but having parked the car and walking close to the ground the noise from behind the West Stand was easily heard and promised much for Part 2.
To the game then, I accompanied Mrs Peeps to the ground, she's far more knowledgeable than me on football matters so I'll leave her to report to Dave on tactics and the subtleties of the game, but I did notice early on that the newly shorn Makienok was alone up top with Jacko in "the hole". Sadly, I think that may be the hole where his talent may now be buried because he has lost it I'm afraid and he contributed nothing as far as I could see apart from colliding with Makienok in the six yard box when presented with one of the few chances in the first half.
It was good to see Harriot back and although I've never been a great fan due to his inconsistency, he was my man of the match today, running after everything, getting down the wing and providing the assist for Big Mak's goal. Harriot played right midfield first half, with Vaz Te left and Cousins and El Hadji Ba centre. Back four of Solly, Sarr (nicking a living IMHO), Lennon and Fox, Hendo in goal.
The first 20 minutes or so made me realise why I haven't bothered to come of late with scant entertainment on offer, dire football and no shot until Forest managed to scrape something together on 23 minutes. A few powder puff shots from both sides and I was thanking my luck stars that Forest were as bad as we were in the final third. Then on 43 minutes, the inevitable happened and we went behind. Same old, same old. After the players half-time Sanatogen (look it up kids), we seem to have galvanised somewhat and there was more purpose about the side. Jacko was taken off early doors and replaced with Holmes-Dennis who went in at right back and Solly moved into midfield, not a great move as it meant we missed any chance of his marauding runs. THD was only on for a couple of minutes when he committed a cynical foul on the edge of our box and was duly booked.The ineffectual Ba was replaced by Gudmundsson, who appeared to inject a bit of life into the team and for a while was at the centre of everything creative. On 70 minutes Harriot escaped down the wing and crossed low to enable Mak to slide in and equalise for the Addicks. A bit of see-saw then with both sides going for it until THD pulled the shirt of the Forest winger twice in quick succession, right in front of the ref, who quite rightly showed a second yellow before giving marching orders. Forest seized their man advantage for a while but fair play to the Addicks, whose 10 men fought back and could have nicked a win in the end with the Forest keeper having to make a couple of fine saves from Harriot to preserve their away point.
All in all a much better second half performance, but still not good enough to make me think that current form is leading us anywhere but League One. Oh, I do hope I'm wrong. A quick mention for Rhys Williams, who I didn't know we'd signed, apparently from Boro for 28 days. He has hardly played any football for 2 years, so he fitted right in when he came on. Didn't do a lot but looked good at shouting. A mention for the Forest fans who supported their team in numbers (just under 3000 of them I reckon) and were vocal throughout. On to the after match protest then. A great number turned out in the West Stand car park at 5pm with plenty of stick being directed towards RD, KM and Richard Murray. Peaceful yet forceful was the order of the day, with a number of punters in the car park being inconvenienced by not being able to get out quickly. Tough!
Apparently Katrien escaped through the network of tunnels that RD has had built under the ground and is now safely back in her Docklands bunker. I could have made that bit up! I'm sure however, that before she left, I saw her mouth the words "Let them eat cake". Being a lightweight, I left after 40 minutes of protest although to be honest I was getting fed up with the chants in support of former players, and was expecting to hear chants in favour of Bartram, Firmani, Hales, Flan......you get my drift. Make no mistake though, the protest is not only gaining momentum, but is being heard both nationally and further afield, evidenced by my listening to 5 Live on the way home and later postings on Charlton Life and Faceache. Enough from me now, except to say Vive Le Revolution. Faire progresser mes braves, faire progresser! A bientot.