Tuesday, 18 October 2016

One step forward....

A tough trip in prospect this evening to Port Vale. Vale sit in seventh, five points ahead of us. Their form has been patchy with a win, loss, win, loss, win, loss sequence and they were pumped 4-0 at Sheffield United on Saturday. However, their home form has been ok and they have seen off Gillingham and Millwall so far this season.

Russell Slade's troops should be up for it tonight after scoring three on Saturday and we should learn whether there is more to our side this season than a routine home win against a relegation favourite. Personally, I can see us taking another backward step ahead of what is a very awkward looking trip to the Priestfield where the locals are very expectant about beating us once again. 

Looking at the table and the fixtures this week, a double defeat would almost inevitably see us drop lower than 18th and the doom and gloom will descend again. No, one win doesn't make a season but our fans are incredibly fickle and the feel-good atmosphere as we left the Valley on Saturday felt pin-prick false to me.

It is still early days of course and Millwall showed last season that a run of form can swiftly move you up the table and into contention. Vale have been shipping goals this season as well as winning games and our chances tonight may depend on how prepared we are to commit men forward and attack. Therein lies the problem for me. Slade has shown repeatedly that he is ultra conservative and his philosophy is very much 'let's defend the point' we have from the outset of matches. On Saturday we even reverted to 4-5-1 after the anonymous Novak was hauled off with us winning. It worked for us with Magennis cutting loose but it's not been a successful strategy hitherto this season and I can see it not being enough this evening.

I hear that the lad singled out for a roughing-up after Saturday's protest by Keohane's Hit Squad turns out to the son of an old Charlton mucker of mine and that Dad was present and none-too-pleased with what he witnessed being inflected on his son. The Trust have taken the matter up with the Club but the bigger hope of any action here will be the police report about the direction given to the macho security team by Tony Keohane. What is strikingly clear is that in today's world where cameras and video capability is hand-held by nearly everyone is that the truth will out. It has been amazing to see what photos taken during the day have already revealed about the individual security men concerned. Their positions in the Directors Box for much of the match are clear as, indeed, was the call to challenge the lad in question as he left the stadium at the end of the game. The North Korean analogy for the Regime will run-and-run.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When we went on the march to meet the Coventry fans on Saturday I said to my son that the last time I was doing this was in the 80s and it wasn't to march in friendship - a couple of blokes of a similar age grinned in agreement!

We often travel by coach from Hastings - used to be a supporters club coach but the club have some involvement. Katrien has offered to meet us before a match over the next couple of months. Not convinced it will ever happen, and not sure we should go as it just helps lend credence to the myth about Pinnochio consulting fans. But the opportunity of asking difficult questions is far too good to miss..

Pembury Addick