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Charlton Athletic vs Sunderland | Saturday 5th March 2022 - KO @ 3pm | Match Preview

Charlton Athletic vs Sunderland
Saturday 5th March 2022 - 3pm Kick-Off
Referee: Anthony Backhouse

This Charlton squad really dont want to help me out in any vein do they - Writing Match Previews can be a walk in the park when things are going well, when they're not, its hard to avoid sounding like a broken record. Its not overly different on the pitch, the Addicks travelled to Sheffield last Saturday looking to stop the rot, and quickly fell behind to a predictable set piece - Once again, it means that Charlton are looking over their shoulders at the team hunting us from below. Sunderland visit this weekend, and whilst another struggling performance may be on the cards, we also have to take the pressure off ourselves, on what'll become... Must win games!!

The Opposition
Name: Sunderland (6th) | Manager: Alex Neil
Ground: Stadium of Light
Previous Meeting: Sunderland 0-1 Charlton Athletic

Even the pending approach of our favourite Black Cats does nothing to lift the mood around SE7 - With just one victory in London since the turn of the Millennium, our opponents must be looking at the fixture for this weekend, closing their eyes in exasperation, and muttering: "God not them again".

Of course our history against Sunderland has for the last 20-years been extremely favourable, and if you need to ask why then I'd question if you were a Millwall spy in disguise - Sunderland showed earlier on in the season, that they can be on an excellent run of form, yet still wilt the moment they come up against their old foes - On this occasion, they've tried a different tact; they come into this game with just one win in the last seven games, so now could have been a decent time to face them... Unfortunately thats if their one win wasn't last weekend at Wigan Athletic, winning 3-0, a sign perhaps that new Manager: Alex Neil is getting the right tune from his squad.

Sunderland though perhaps travel down to London this weekend with a secret weapon, the North East has been a happy hunting ground for the most part this season - Defeat against Hartlepool United in the EFL Trophy has given teams in the region a glimmer of hope... The likes of Sunderland, and Gateshead muttering in the corners; "How did they do that", "Wait a minute, are we allowed to beat them?"

Am sorry to say Sunderland fans, if you cant beat us now... I doubt you ever will!!

Charlton Team News
Well it seems from the Q&A last night as though 3-5-2 will be the way forwards, and wont be changing any time soon - If that is the case then we obviously need to recruit sensibly for that system in the summer, and stop with this square peg nonsense. After all should Jackson be able to get the right players then the system will work, then it becomes all about the application of those individuals.

With regards to individual players though, there was a welcome return for Jayden Stockley and Scott Fraser, with both getting valuable minutes in what was an already lost cause last Saturday - Sean Clare sits out the last game of his suspension (Although will be a guest on CharltonTV), whilst Jake Forster-Caskey nears a return, with the midfielder set to play for the U23s next week.

Gunter - Lavelle - Famewo
Jaiyesimi - Dobson - Morgan - Purrington
Stockley - Burstow

Substitutes Bench: Harness - Pearce - Castillo - Gilbey - Leko - Fraser - Campbell

I might be able to sit here and slightly joke that if Sunderland cant beat us, then they never will etc... But you could equally sit here and question that if the Addicks cant get a result against Sunderland, then who could we possibly beat between now and the end of the season... Naturally we wont go between now and the end of the season without another win, but victory at the end of a tough run of games, will certainly give us hope going into some important games.


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    Can the Category be updated by a Mod please? - For some reason wasn't able to select an option again.
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    It can't be easy doing a match preview in these depressing times so well done mate.
    Having travelled to Sheffield last Saturday and watching another inept display it's hard to see where the next win will come.
    I know it's Sunderland and they must hate playing us but I reckon they will win comfortably tomorrow. 
    Sadly Charlton 1 Sunderland 3.
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    Can the Category be updated by a Mod please? - For some reason wasn't able to select an option again.
    Done and stickied.
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    They now have a credible manager.
    I expect Sunderland to have an easy ride tomorrow, where they can avoid injuries and exhaustion and chalk up an easy win, as been happening to us for weeks.
    Playing Charlton lately has been an R&R recovery session for opponents with the added bonus of three points.
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    edited March 2022
    Please no Burstow. Play Lee as a forward but not somebody so completely ineffectual as to effectively be playing with 10 men.
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    1-1 draw return of Stockley and Fraser should give us more options in our attacking department. Need to grind some points out before end of the season.

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    well done FA, not an easy task similar to doing the stats where I expect 1-5s but hope for 6-9s
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    I am forever glass half full. BUT its not even the losses it jackson coming out and saying the summer is going be be massive. for me thats a white flag the players are not going to perform big defeat here. 
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    It says a lot when our captain who had a purple patch to get JJ in as perm boss, now cannot get into the team ahead of Gunter when we need solidity, experience and leadership at the back.
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    Need a volunteer to start the Match Thread v Sunderland.

    I'm not going to be around at that time, sorry.

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    I am forever glass half full. BUT its not even the losses it jackson coming out and saying the summer is going be be massive. for me thats a white flag the players are not going to perform big defeat here. 
    I'm not sure he needed to say it publicly. Some things are best left unsaid in the press.

    I guess Jacko would hope that motivates players to perform well enough to either earn a new contract or put themselves in the shop window.

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    Surprise home win, 2-1 with a late winner. 
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    Have we chucked out loads of free tickets ?
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    Speaking in his Thursday press conference, Johnnie Jackson confirmed Conor Washington is nearing a return to action,
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    This fixture was going to be the first game for my little boy, he’s four years old and football obsessed already, euro 2020 was the eye opener for him, he’s got about ten kits, he plays on a Saturday morning at a club already and watches MOTD with me Sunday mornings, exactly as I imagined a father/son football relationship would be.  This fixture was going to be perfect, a big club at home back end of the season, always dramatic when we play, always an atmosphere, a bigger crowd than usual and of course at this level a promotion 6 pointer.  But I can’t do it now, the fixture is one big massive damp squib, why would I take him to a game where the crowd will be toxic, flat, dominated by the away fans, a game which means nothing to us, where before even the game kicks off I’ll be deflated and uninterested.  

    Understand this might come across as dramatic, but how do I sell that to an impressionable four year old, absolutely gutted, of course I’m privileged to be able to have the option to take my son to football what with everything going on in the world, but this game is a real low point for me now, only hope is we have a good summer and I can take him early next season at home when things are better, I despair at supporting us sometimes I genuinely do.

    Sell it to your son on the basis that the game does mean something to us in terms of relegation.

    That we need players to fight, accept responsibility and get the fans on their side.

    That this is the ugly side of football and one which he'll get used to (as a Charlton fan) as he grows up.

    That this is the other side of football, when you're not doing well and when you need strong characters to stand up and be counted to get themselves out of the various holes they've been digging themselves into.

    Or, that this is an example of how not to defend at set-pieces.

    That this is an example of how not to defend when an opposition player is making a run on the blind side of you.

    That this is how not to give up after 8 mins when you're 0-1 down.

    That this is how not to give up after 45 mins when you're 0-2 down.

    That the best life for your son is to support one of the Prem top four/six and not be exposed to a Valley Express coach journey to Accrington Stanley (apart from Tottenham).

    Negatives into positives. 
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    Irrespective of past history with Sunderland, I think we will get something from this and end our awful run of defeats. I am really hoping we see Fraser and even, possibly, Washington. If either are fit to start, I think we might win. However, I have a horrible feeling that we will see Gilbey and/or Matthews again, but I really hope not. With either of those starting we will not win.
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    edited March 2022
    Sunderland to break their curse in style - 0-2 or more.

    We can’t keep a blank sheet and we can’t score, but we’ll keep playing the same team, with the same formation with the same shortcomings, frailties and lack of effort.  The false dawn under the early Jackson days has been replaced with the bleak reality that this set up and the structure has serious issues behind the scenes and not enough players willing to bleed for the shirt.  Spineless describes the last 5 performances and barring 1 or 2 notable exceptions the rest of players need to step up and take responsibility. 
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    If Stockley and Washington start, we have a decent chance. We can't ignore the fact that decent strikers are key to a side and we simply haven't had any during our slump. That is a serious mitigation. We can be angry at the reasons for this, but labelling all of our players as rubbish, for this level at least, is probably over the top.
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    We are currently conceding between 2 and 4 goals, it’s asking a lot of 2 players to come in, turn that round and score between 3 and 5 to win.  If you don’t concede you can’t lose, if you don’t score you can’t win.  The former is key, after which the latter becomes imperative
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    Attack is a form of defence. A very important one. Especially with a player ike Stockley in the side.
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    Surely Fraser has to start, the bloke had Covid over a month ago
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    We piss off Sunderland fans yet again.
    A goal start for them, we win 2-1.
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    Bereft of form and confidence and lacking any goal threat for weeks.
    Can Stockley be the talisman we need and Fraser the puppet master?
    Not this week I suspect.
    They score, we cave in.
    0 to us, anything between 1 and 5 to them.
    Having missed the last couple to domestic matters, I'll be back to witness first hand the inertia
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    Terrific preview F A .. the Sunny Boys got a surprise (to me @ least) 3-0 win at Wigan last weekend so must be on the up under new management .. BUT we all know they are our regular whipping boys so an Addicks win is surely on the cards .. hope Stockley is back and ready to rumble

    CAFC 2 v Sunderland 1
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    edited March 2022
    Charlton 0 - 2 Sunderland 
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