Saturday, 15 October 2016

Charlton Athletic 3 v Coventry City 0

Well, that was an unexpectedly easy victory. A touch flattering but I guess it shows why the Sky Blues prop up the table.

The football was secondary today. It was all about the protesting by both sets of fans. For the first time ever, rival supporters came together to protest in a common cause and, despite fake Regime cries of fear and intimidation, both sets of supporters behaved perfectly and were a credit to both clubs. 

I was impressed to see several hundred Coventry fans march up from the Anti and stop by the Valley Cafe to be joined by a couple of thousand Charlton fans facing down the hill. The first Coventry cries of "We want Roland out" were all it took to unite the supporters and both sets marched toe-in-toe and heel-in-heel down Floyd Road. The march was split at 'the bottleneck' and the united fans approached the car park in a pincer movement where they again joined to protest at the asset-stripping SISU and the totally incompetent Duchatelet Regime. 

Inside the ground, 3000 spongey pigs were launched onto the playing surface just after kick-off which caused a six minute delay to the match. Rival fans sang in unison throughout the game and "let-down by the football league" was was sung by both sets of fans.

On the pitch, Ricky Holmes found a yard of space and quick turn inside the box allowed him to beat Burge in the Coventry goal to give the Addicks the half-time lead. There wasn't much more to shout about but both sides managed to hit posts and Declan Rudd kept Charlton in it with a flying save.

After the break, Coventry came further forward and made a double-substitution as they sought to get back in the match but that left space for Magennis to maraud in and after getting the better of his marker to a punt, he managed to pick out the advancing Lookman for an easy finish. Two-nil and Maggenis wasn't done. Sensing his opportunity he managed to beat his man to a through ball and get in between him and the sprawling Burge to lift the ball wide of the keeper for the third. It was a really good goal and one I am sure Josh will cherish. It killed the match and all that was left was final acknowledgement of the protests. Charlton fans in lettered T-Shirts spelt "S-I-S-U O-U-T" in the West Stand, much to the delight of the visiting supporters and theirs responded with "R-0-L-A-N-D O-U-T." Great organisation by CARD and Fighting The Jimmy Hill Way. 

There were some after match complaints about some of the stewarding, particularly what seems to be club-hired plain clothes thugs who were not wearing SIA accreditation but were clearly manhandling and threatening protestors over removal of a flag. Four were clearly photographed in the Director's Box during the match and, I believe, tried to confront CARD marchers as they entered the car park before the game. We don't want to see any unnecessary violence and have to hope The Regime will not repeat this aspect of their operation as it is a very provocative move which isn't likely to end well for them if they do it again. As a minimum they will need to drop the four they used this time as they have been well and truly exposed.

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