I've always been a little bit quick to criticise. I do try not to, but I often fail. The likelihood of me being too quick to criticise is directly proportional to how much I care. Thus I have a reputation for being very good at bitching about things I can be bothered to care about. Charlton being very near the top of that list.
I've been rather quiet recently. This is not just because I'm incapable of saying anything nice, but mainly as I haven't been to any of the fantastic away games in November, and I've been really busy with work. However I thought I'd review my thoughts from after the Brighton game to show just how little I know about football.
You will all remember the Brighton game, we lost 4-0 at home in the third division. Please try to remember that as you review my ramblings.
- Benson had an average game compared to what I've seen so far.
I think this is ok. He has gone on to score four goals in the six league games since.
- Abbott was shocking from start to when he went off. He looks overweight and cumbersome when he runs. I had very high hopes for him at the end of the season, but I'm now wondering if he was just having a good season last year at Oldham.
Again, I think this situation has not been resolved. Abbott still looks slow and overweight, but then we've not seen a lot of him, which is understandable based on the fact that we are scoring for fun with Benson and Anyinsah upfront - not to mention Johnnie Jackson.
- Our players played like a group that had met in the changing room. The suggestion that the team needs to gel is looking like wishful thinking now. We are just not a team in any sense of the word when comparing us to BrightonAlthough this is probably a fair reflection of the game itself, clearly the players have gelled a lot since then and started to look like a team that can grind out results as well as having a score fest.
- We chose the worst performance for what could well be the highest crowd we will have for years if not decades - especially if we continue the decline we seem determined to.
I m not so sure we will beat that crowd this season, but we seem a little less determined to continue the decline than I suggested we were.
- Parkinson could have no excuses if he were relieved of his duties this week, and the pressure of that will almost certainly make it harder to turn things around.
Yeah, I was right on the money there wasn't I?
I went on to say:
If we are going to turn around our fortunes like Norwich did last season we are going to have to follow their lead and replace the manager. Otherwise we are going to have to get lucky, raise the performances above what we have been seen in the first fifteen games (including cup fixtures), and scrape through the playoffs.
Again you could be forgiven for thinking that my mouth had been replaced by my bum as I was clearly talking out of my arse hole.
I think Parkinson has been given plenty of time to prove himself, but take out the first six games of last season and his performance is not good enough to get us where we need to be. To get us where the club can actually survive financially.
Clearly we need to win promotion to get us back to where we can survive financially, and that is by no means guaranteed, but I think we don't need to get lucky to scrape through the playoffs now. Parkinson has also done a lot more that win the first six games of last season.
Overall I think we have failed to really perform at home. I know the teams come to defend in many cases, but we have now played the team bottom of the forth division and a conference side at home and after nine league games and three cup games we have failed to record a two goal victory. We haven't even held a two goal lead.
This can be offset by us having scored more goals away than anyone else in the division.
I remember reading an interview with Steve Gritt from the 1970s (I think) where the suggestion that away performances are better because of the pressure that the home crowd put on the players at The Valley. We are certainly more demanding at home that other teams in the division, but then so we should be, we are one of the best supported teams in the division, and were in the Premier League a few years ago.
Since we lost to Brighton in what we were describing as a six pointer before kick off, but not afterwards, we have picked up 16 points from a possible 18 and we have won seven and drawn three from ten games. Maybe we are going to do a Norwich after all?
Either way I would like to distance myself from the negative comments (and thoughts for that matter) that were released too soon after the 4-0 defeat at home.
I have always given our manager my full support, but I'd like to confirm that I am fully behind Parkinson. This is unless we lose at Rochdale and Luton, or course, in which case I'll be calling for him to be sacked!
Up the Adicks!