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Post-match Thread: Bolton Wanderers v Charlton Athletic | Tuesday 8 February 2022 : 8pm KO



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    Club's broken. There's no reason this team should be so incredibly bipolar from match to match. Players can have bad games, they can cost you goals, they can go on bad runs. I don't think I've ever seen a team before though, Charlton or otherwise, that manage to be collectively terrible all at the same time for no apparent reason. Two games ago, just over one week, Sean Clare played the game of his life in a man of the match performance. 8 days later he's atrocious. Famewo was excellent against Pompey and scored the winner against Wimbledon, and collapsed last night. Gilbeying is now a verb, meaning to fluctuate horrifically from good to bad at absolutely any time. Against Pompey everyone was good, last night absolutely everyone was bad, I just don't understand how this team is able to operate like that. It isn't even just these players, it's been happening ever since we came back into this league and we've gone through about 400 players since then. Sandgaard and Gallen are always talking about building a long-term team so we don't have to rebuild every season but I'd rather send this entire squad into the shadow realm and start over than think about Kirk and Aneke's 14 year contracts.
    I feel like ever since Morecambe scored that second goal against us the players have woken up and remembered who they are and who they play for and realised it's their job to constantly collapse whenever there's any kind of form on the horizon. We gift stupid goals, refuse to score more than one goal unless it specifically won't get us a win and somehow manage to perform badly collectively instead of individually. We're completely reliant on about 4 players, and if they can't play, or don't play well it feels like there's no-one able to pick up the slack and operate the team. If Inniss, Gilbey, Stockley and Washington play well then there's not many teams who can match us. If any of those are injured, absent or Gilbeying then we can't rely on a great performance from a wingback or another midfielder, or a heroic centre back performance to rescue us, we completely drain away like a bath with the plug pulled out. There's no grit or focus in this team, it's going through the motions hoping a couple of players provide us with leadership or drive or the ability to hold the ball up front, all while Dobson scurries around trying to make every single tackle and, presumably, wondering why the hell no-one else feels like getting involved. Again.
    I just don't know what to make of this lot. I don't really feel that excited for games because there's a really good chance that from the first 5 minutes you'll be able to tell they've decided to have one of those games and you're not getting that tenner back no matter how much you might wish you'd spent it on literally anything else, and it's another missed opportunity, another set of points dropped and a longer-still wait since Charlton turned out a side that you could consistently feel a connection with. I really don't think new players will solve it. We plugged the holding midfield gap from last season, it hasn't helped. We signed more centre backs, it hasn't helped. We made Stockley permanent, signed Rob Lee's son and stopped playing Gunter, it hasn't helped. We replaced Aneke with actual Aneke and signed the golden messiah Scott Fraser and the players are still turning up for a match looking like they thought they were going on a trip to see the darts rather than compete in a football match. I don't think signing a few more players in the summer will fix it, I don't think changing the manager again will fix it, and I don't think a complete overhaul will fix it, I think we're just bad. I dunno it's exhausting, burn the whole thing.
    It's probably Roland's fault.
    To save you the essay. Team full of inconsistent league 1 players. We need better.
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    Some good posts here dealing with the harsh reality of a bungled, wasted season due to mismanagement and no clear vision. 10K season ticket holders suckered in by broken promises. God we are in a mess.

    I'm 61 soon and been going since 1969. Reality is hitting home about our club. I realise now that the Curbishley years was my zenith. The game has changed so much in the last 30 years that I see absolutely no prospect of us attaining premier league status ever again. 

    Reckon we will huff and puff between the lower reaches of the championship and league 1. Not even a golden academy crop will save us as they will be whisked off to play under 23 football at whatever premier club comes in.

    Meanwhile Millwall and Palace continue to laugh at our near terminal demise.  Sigh. No doubt my Oxford mate will be lording it over me in the curry house next Saturday as well. Oxford ffs, how far have we fallen. 

    Funny enough I was thinking about our team who had a successful campaign in 1968/69 the other day.  It was the team who finished 3rd in division 2 - with a notable 2 0 win over Brian Clough's Derby County.  There was a toughness about those old time players that doesn’t exist in our present side. 

    Whether it was a combination of heavy pitches and balls, the lack of substitutes, the diet of beer and fags, minor injuries being treated with a bucket and sponge and major injuries by a cortisone injection I dunno.  But, come what May, those players would strain every sinew to turn out the next week and play for the full 90 minutes.  Nowadays we have 'managed minutes' and accommodate players who prefer to play part time.

    Convention decrees that old time athletes would be no match for their modern equivalent, but looking at the teams from the Derby and Bolton games I'd (hypothetically) swap out Curtis for Matthews, Went for Pearce, Campbell for Gilbey and Treacy for Burstow.  Pretty sure that'd be enough to secure a win at Bolton  :)  

    Wright, Curtis, Kinsey, Campbell, Went, Reeves, Gregory, Treacy, Tees, Moore, Mullen.  (Keirs unused) (This is the actual team who beat Brian Clough’s Derby County 2 0 at the Valley in front of 30,000).

    MacGillivray, Clare Pearce, Famewo, Matthews, Gilbey. Dobson, Morgan, Jaiyesimi, Burstow, Washington.  (Henderson (unused), Lavelle, Purrington (unused), Lee (Unused), Fraser, Leko (Unused), Aneke).   


    If only we had players of that calibre now, I was there when we beat Derby 2-0 and I am sure there were more than 30k in the ground. 

    Happy days
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Roland Out Forever!