I really thought we wouldn't lose this game. I thought a draw was the most likely outcome, but I never thought we would be made to look so inadequate.
Despite being the better side for the first half hour I don't think we ever actually looked like doing anything other than losing. I, sadly, also believe that we will not see a change in fortunes until there is a change of manager.
I understand the reasons for the sham that was Phil Parkinson's appointment, and I cannot make a good case for changing him now, but I think we have no chance at all of avoiding relegation without a manager that has a lot more 'ability'.
I was impressed with what I read about Spring, and Murty did every bit as well as I'd expected (and hoped), but that aside we signed Keith Gillespie who didn't want to stay, and Deon Burton. I find it worrying that after signing a striker to add to the £3m we have spent on strikers since relegation (I'm not counting Luke Varney's £2m) and having a total of five plus Waghorn Parkinson thinks we need a new striker. Andy Gray scored goals for Burnley last season and if he's not the answer then I think we need to be looking at other options than signing another one.
Burton has only just signed. If he'd not good enough then why did we sign him? He's not even a loan player any more. One of Pardew's worst failings was that when things didn't seem to work out he signed more players. It is beginning to look like that is Parkinson's only tactic too.
I'm also very concerned with the way the manager singles out players for public criticism. If he were my boss I would now be determined to do everything I can to see him fail. I have no problem with being hard on players (staff), but slagging them off to the press is just not going to work.
All the time we have such inadequate tactical and motivational skills controlling the playing staff we are going to need to have a much, much better team than the opposition to win games. It's a bit like the opposite to punching above your weight. Sadly there do not seem to be any teams poor enough in this division for us to win when without a better management setup.
I am determined to do everything I can to help us get out of this rut, but I can honestly say I have never been as inclined to stop going to watch Charlton as I feel right now. The whole match day experience has become the least enjoyable part of my week, and this is supposed to be something I look forward to. It's what I do in my 'leisure' time. If I didn't go with my Dad I wouldn't be going again this season, and if I didn't have a season ticket I would be missing half of those games left and suggesting that my Dad and I do something else together for a few months. I never, ever thought I'd be thinking like that.
I've decided that I will not be renewing my season ticket in the spring. I don't think the club will go bust, so I am not doing it to prevent having a worthless ticket, I just don't want to feel any obligation to go any more. I will still go to games, but even if we stay in the Championship I will be limiting my visits to The Valley next season, and if we play like we have this season I will probably hardly go at all.
I have little to add to the match reports that have already been written, and you could probably just cut and paste my reports from most of the last ten games anyway. We had everything except a result - the only thing that matters.
To cap it all Phil Parkinson says "The fans care but no-one cares more than me and the players;"
How dare he? I have been following this team's fortunes since I was ten. With the exception of family Charlton has been the most important thing in my life for twenty-seven years. He has been at the club for less than two. All he cares about is where he is going to be working when the board eventually sack him - which cannot come soon enough for me.
Sorry to be so negative, but it wasn't that long ago that we beat Liverpool, the then European Cup holders. Now we need at least three games to get out of the relegation zone, and we have only won four all season.