Sunday, 5 March 2017

Northampton Town 2 v Charlton Athletic 1 - D-Week for Robinson

Back home after a long-planned and enjoyable weekend with best friends on the south coast. Predictably enough we had nothing to cheer on the Charlton table front but we at least had the satisfaction of seeing honest, ordinary supporters, like ourselves make a trip as long or longer than any in league football to take another large step in the battle to rid our club of Roland Duchatelet and Katrien Meire.

Karl Robinson's losing streak is beginning to look terminal. He plainly can't get a performance from his side no matter what he says or does. Like the supporters, I think they have all had enough of his contradictory drivel and there's virtually no passion, motivation or team spirit left. As I have said before, it makes little difference who's in charge of team affairs when they won't be supported with any ambition from the absent billionaire owner. However, it's painful watching a side sliding to a historic low and I suspect the annoyance-factor will be too much for Duchatelet this week if we don't pick up points. 

"You're not fit to wear the shirt" was bellowed out at full-time as Robinson legged it down the tunnel. A 2-1 defeat away from home and you have to fear for the two home matches this week. The last few optimists will look at Scunny's stuttering form and believe we can get a vital win on Tuesday. The rest of us, including Robinson, will be worrying about yet another loss which could put us in real trouble for the weekend when Walsall come to town. That should be a winnable game, even with our disarray. The Saddlers sit in mid-table and should have little to play for but you have to ask precisely what we are fighting for bar self-preservation. I fully expect that to kick in before the end, but when?

The bad news this week is that six of the seven sides below us play each other next weekend, so points will be gained whatever we do or don't do, and we face of the prospect of dropping to within a couple of the door and smelling familiar relegation breath. Bet365 have even revived interest in my pre-season relegation bet and are offering me £25 cash-out - things could get more interesting this week.

Meanwhile, 300 diehards made the long journey to St. Truiden, east of Brussels, to spend a golden hour on the streets of the sleepy market town protesting about Roland Duchatelet's failed ownership of the club they love. They came from far and wide and every individual's story was different and yet similar. They found kindred spirits and formed bonds with fans they are likely never to have known but whose footsteps they have often walked in over the years. The media were in force and there will be more coverage to come. What is already clear is the next visit will be bigger and more vociferous still. It will also be unopposed by the local police and authorities who were fully satisfied with the planning and execution of the supporters' march and who have made it clear they support freedom of speech and right to protest peacefully.

There has been no reaction, as yet, from Duchatelet or Meire, although Meire's PR machine was in action this weekend trying to spin it once again. Ahead of the match they leaked that Rick Everitt had bought a ticket for Northampton and would be supporting the side rather than the protest. As if that wasn't a legitimate choice, even for protesters? Sounds like a breach of Data Security law too, but de cloob are getting desperate. As usual they got it wrong as Rick's brother Mick was the one headed to Sixfields. They also tried to spin it out with prominent journalists by asking for mentions that they had funded five supporters coaches to Northampton (as if that somehow levelled up the moral balance). Henry Winter was quick to make it crystal clear he wasn't playing ball and Mark Chapman confirmed the same after a quick-thinking and agitated Addick pulled him on Twitter. The club's PR team are really scraping the barrel. PR only works when the masses don't recognise it - this lot don't see that we all smell it a mile off and, honestly, it does the club more harm than good. They also pushed out news of five coaches headed to Northampton as if there was some kind of victory here given only two were going to a non-match in Belgium? Absolutely desperate - the other 1150 travelling to Northampton were happy to pay to make their own way there independent of Meire and Pitch PR. Even their cheesey offer of a bacon roll for those willing to travel on their free coaches was bettered by the protestor's sausage sandwiches!

When 'Battle for the Club' is finally published, the events of this weekend will have a chapter all to itself. Meanwhile, brace yourself for more chaos this week....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"He (Karl) is still NOT the Messiah....he's a very naughty boy...now clear off !!!!"