Monday, 5 September 2016

Russell's learning point over his first Charlton transfer window

I am slightly concerned that Russell Slade has come me out of his first Charlton  transfer window with the wrong impression about The Regime's unique approach to young players developed by the club. 

He is quoted in the Newshopper saying that "part of the window, other than adding to your squad, is also ensuring your best players stay so I am very happy Ademola is still a Charlton player." We all drink to that Russell but we let Gudmundson and Cousins go (as well as 18 others) and haven't adequately replaced them which is why our midfield is our Achilles Heel and we will be exposed if we suffer any further injuries there. I also think he's either ignorant of the 'Dublin Revelations' where Meire stated that her aim was to create a unique supporter engagement model where the club focused on giving us a nice day out and seeing some Premier League stars of the future before they are sold on. Perhaps the refusal to sell Lookman to Palace represents a change in policy but it looks to me like a sales strategy given the £5-6m recouped this Summer on Gudmundson, Cousins, Harriott and Holmes-Dennis, three of whom were developed through the club and none of whom have made the top flight yet. If the price is right in four months time Slade could well be saying farewell to Ademola irrespective of how he's played since and where we sit in the table.

Meanwhile, London News Online is questioning the deal done to cancel Alou Diarra's contract. At 35, injured and wanting to be back in France with his family, Alou's contract was cancelled by mutual consent. No big loss, all things considered although half a season amid our weak midfield might have represented value-for-money. However, Alou's immediate signature at Nancy suggest some skullduggery on his part and a suggestion that he may have had one over on the Club's experienced Competition Lawyer. Wouldn't be the first eh Alou? 

Talking of which, Big Tex was gutted at not getting a move away to Belgium. His deal fell through at the last minute on their side, leaving The Regime with a player with a big wage earner on a long term contract who looks surplus to requirements. Who thought it was the right thing to do when he was given a 5 (five) year deal when he joined us in 2015? Whilst I am on the subject, has anyone seen El-Hadji Ba?

Charlton fans will have been largely satisfied with this weekend's results whilst we weren't in action. Millwall, Bolton, Gillingham and Peterborough all failed to win and we are down in tenth, six points off Bolton with an away trip to Scunny in hand. 

Next weekend's long haul to Fleetwood looks like it will be a good test. The Cod Army are up to third after beating whipping boys Coventry on Saturday in the north-west. The Charlton Athletic Supporters Trust are running the first of their new supporter coach services to this one. It will be over 25% cheaper than The Regime's own coaches and won't include a  two hour tour of Kent and South-East London pick-ups before departing for the five hour trip to Fleetwood. I was tempted for a moment to support CAST's initiative here but sobered up quickly enough when I thought about the time on the road and the realistic prospects of a depressing journey home. Oxford is a more realistic consideration for me...

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