Saturday 3 November 2007

Turning Point?

There are 10 games until Christmas. We are sitting on the fringe of the play-off places. This is where I thought we would be and was hoping for a push towards third by Christmas, which would leave us handily placed for January and February and the run in. Obviously, I wasn't anticipating being here on the back of three successive defeats.

I believe the result of todays match at Southampton could be pivotal in terms of the next two months and ultimately the season. Lose and we face the prospect of five defeats in succession and a hard struggle break back into a play-off place. Win and we can travel to Bristol on Tuesday with renewed heart before getting back to winning ways at the Valley.

However, today's game will be difficult and we will need as good a performance as we have managed away from home all season. Southampton have conceded more goals than any other side in the division. They are missing five defenders and I understand from Wyn Grant's page that Jason Euell may also miss the game. Ordinarily he wouldn't bother me but on the back of the recent sequence of former Addicks scoring against their old club, it might come as something of a blessing. If we are looking for any other omens, then the ongoing uncertainty about a potential takeover at St Mary's continues and the latest threat about have to sell players in January might just help us today.

On the glass-half-full front, we are overdue some luck. If the QPR performance was just one of those we seem to reserve for live TV, then we can expect a significant improvement and see us creating more chances which we will need to take advantage of their poor defensive record. For this reason, I hope we go 4-4-2 and not try 4-5-1 again as I fear it will encourage them to attack us and that will almost inevtiably lead to goals with our defensive record this season.

So, I can see an attacking game with both sides trying to take the lead. This could be decisive because there looks to be goals in this game. I have already plumped for the Addicks to win a five goal thriller and am sticking with this. I can't bring myself to travel in the wake of last week so will be relying upon Radio Kent to follow the game.

C'mon you Reds!

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