Often Partisan

GAMEDAY: Charlton Away

Blues travel to south east London today hoping to begin April with a win over strugglers Charlton to reignite their fading playoff hopes.

Charlton Athletic

Charlton begin the day second-bottom, 14 places and 24 points worse off than Blues. They had a relatively successful March, winning two of their four games with the win over Middlesbrough breaking a run of 11 without a win at the Valley. The Valley hasn’t been a happy place this season with fans protesting against the owner Ronald Duchatalet with the police warning them against criminal acts today.

On the pitch, Jordan Cousins, Patrick Bauer and Chris Solly could all return.


It’s not likely Kyle Lafferty will make his debut for Blues today after feeling tightness in his groin while playing for Northern Ireland, while Diego Fabbrini has fully recovered from a heavily bruised toe. Clayton Donaldson and Jacques Maghoma have only returned from international duty on Friday and will have been given the once-over to ensure they’re fit for today.

If Blues are to look to playoff contention then they have to win today. Although Charlton have had a bit of a renaissance in the last month they are in the bottom three for a reason – Blues need to find their shooting boots quickly.

Suspension Watch

One red card (three match suspension served): James Vaughan

9 Yellow Cards: Maikel Kieftenbeld
8 Yellow Cards: Stephen Gleeson
6 Yellow Cards: Diego Fabbrini and Jonathan Grounds
5 Yellow Cards:  Jon Toral, David Davis and Paul Caddis
4 Yellow Cards:  Michael Morrison and Paul Robinson
3 Yellow Cards: David Cotterill,  Clayton Donaldson and James Vaughan
2 Yellow Cards: Jonathan Spector and Neal Eardley
1 Yellow Card: Tomasz Kuszczak

The cutoff date for 5 yellow cards to attract a suspension is November 30, 2015
The cutoff date for 10 yellow cards to attract a suspension is March 13, 2016

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83 Responses to “GAMEDAY: Charlton Away”

  • Pods says:

    I did say the last game against Fulham was a must win game, and looked what happened.
    Today’s game at Charlton must surely be a MUST win game, just to keep on shirt tales of the likes of Cardiff, Ipswich. Forget the game in hand, treat this as a bonus, because any thing can happen in this league.
    Lets go for it
    Charlton 1 – 2 Blues.


  • Mickmacablue says:

    Big game today got to win, I think we might see Vaughan and Donaldson both up front today it’s make or break time Up the blues KRO

  • Dave Mann says:

    Nearly there and it’s a lovely day .. Fingers crossed guys please . Talk to you later ! KRO

  • Pods says:

    Dave Mann – Dont forget the Sun Lotion.
    Have a great day, with a positive result.


    • Dave Mann says:

      Pods , our legion of Blue noses are everywhere , it’s spot the Charlton fan mate , it’s one way traffic , let hope we destroy this cockney league one side , at the moment it’s totally blue all this side of London .. It’s amazing yet expected . KRO

  • This is not a must win game , this is a game to see who is good enough , it is a game to see if the system we use is good enough , it is game to see if we are moving in the right direction , we need six shots on target , we need 2 goals scored , one more than them , we want no prisoners , no excuses , we have seen this squad of players lose to many times to lower opposition , it is time to move forward and up , anybody that doesn’t want premiership football step down know , we the fans want success , it might not be this season , but we want an improvement against the lower teams , players have to be in control of their positions as managers have to be right with their selections , COME ON SHOW YOURSELVES WHAT YOU HAVE…..kro

  • Dave Mann says:

    William we don’t need the over dramatics please .kRO

  • ChrisG says:

    Happy 5th Birthday O.P. Unbelievable to think that Daniels blog has outlasted hundreds of football managers!! KRO going Dan.

  • DoctorD says:

    Charlton 2 Blues 0

  • Bluey says:

    I can see it being 3-3.

  • Sharrap Dave , passion ,true grit , guts and fervour, .. Oh to be young again …..ha ..ha..

  • Dave Mann says:

    Please… Thank you .

    • Dave Mann says:

      Finished..and please don’t give me an excuse because Ime not really in the mood , have I made myself quite clear .. Good .. Goodnight : KRO

  • Not a lot any of us can say about that Dave , except totally gutted ….KRO…

    • Mitchell says:

      William. It’s the best that we can do. It really is. No point ranting.We are no better and no worse than any of the teams from 6th.downwards to 24.

      • Shirley Blue says:

        The table doesn’t lie. We are where we are – a decent mid-table Championship team. We had an outside chance of the play-offs but that’s gone now barring a miracle. I wasn’t there but feel sorry for those who made the trip and could have justifiably expected a win and decent performance against a very poor Charlton team who will still get relegated, I gave up on the play-offs after the QPR game. We have got the Vile to look forward to anyway.

        • Dave Mann says:

          Enjoy Shirley , that’s a good as it gets .

          • Bluey says:

            Well it`s taken a while for the truth to sink in but we were simply never good enough.I wished i`d been wrong but have never understand the positivity of some fans.We desperately new owners to kickstart the club financially because if things drag on into next season then i`m afraid it will be more of the same,at best.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Correct Mitchell . KRO

  • steve says:

    Pressures off now,lets see what happens.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Steve , absolutely nothing .

  • Dave Mann says:

    Mediocre team, mediocre players , mediocre manager .. Sorry but I have the right for my reasons .

  • I know that Mitch , I am gutted that we have not done more goalwise , I’m disappointed that a lower team has had 5 more shots than us and more on target , I don’t easily believe in can’t , when against some of the top teams we have proved that we can , KRO

  • Tony says:

    I’m not that disappointed to be honest, Gary Rowett has done well he has stabilized the team no fear of relegation, that is all I expected.
    Dave has it spot on mediocre team, mediocre manager I am grateful to GR But I’m sure he has found his level, I know he has been hampered by lack of funds but could you trust him with 20million? Afraid I couldn’t.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Exactly Tony .

  • ChrisG says:

    R.I.P Blues. Still scrtching my head over what system we were actually playing.

    • Shirley Blue says:

      I think that’s being half the problem. Too much f*cking about with systems and too many changes rather than sticking to what got us in a good position in the first place. It’s felt a bit like LC days recently. You also have to wonder whether the players really wanted to get in the play-offs so poor has recent form being – if we did actually get promoted most of them would be looking for another club.

  • Art says:

    I’m amazed at the level of disappointment from those who have criticised the realist’s for being negative.

    The squad was never ever strong enough to reach the play offs- the defence on occasions has been to say the least fragile and we have drawn far to many games.

    I still however have the greatest respect and confidence in GR and I sincerely hope we don’t lose him but I think he will move on.

    Never forget the dark days under that idiot Clark.

    • Shirley Blue says:

      I hope you are wrong about GR going but you are right this is nothing like as bad as the LC era. I think the biggest disappointment is the lack of impact the players who were brought in during January have had but at least he has had a chance to have a look at them before we wasted what little funds we do have to bring players in.

    • Dave Mann says:

      Art , the realists were being negative at that moment in time when things were more optemistic and now your saying told you so .. Yeah easy mate easy . KRO

      • Art says:

        Sorry Dave you have a selective memory.

        I’ve said on numerous occassions the squad wasn’t good enough but you never listened.

        I think it’s called blind passion.

    • Bluey says:

      Art that`s absolutely spot-on. The realists amongst our numbers have fully expected this end to the season and are not surprised in the slightest by the outcome.It was patently obvious the squad wasn`t close to a promotion side.I`m amazed though that it seems to be those with an optimistic nature who seem to be harder on the team and even GR is getting questioned by some which i don`t understand (simple disappointment?). Gary is a young manager and is still learning his trade, he needs our support and a bit of gratitude for what he`s done.

  • Burnley 2 blues 2. / blues 1 Derby 1. / blues 3. Ipswich o. / blues 1 hull 0 / Derby 0 blues. 3 / Middleborough 0. Blues 0. / blues 1 Cardiff. 0. …..hey that’s us ..

  • Little Al says:

    Its been obvious for a few weeks now that we were not going to make the play offs, and to be quite honest we have never been quite good enough. What frustrates me is there was an opportunity to give some of the youngsters a game or two, if there is one criticism of GR he is a very cautious manager, he has a set game plan and is reluctant to change it. I suppose he is still an inexperienced manager and perhaps he will become more flexible in time. I regret to say this I find his style of play is quite boring to watch but I accept he is limited by the standard of players we have.

  • Mitchell says:

    Next season will be a tough one to merely survive with the quality of teams coming down. Our squad is ok but nowhere near good enough to maintain a mid table position. This season with very poor teams turning us over especially at home-emphasises the need to restructure now. Number one priority is to get assurances that TTA are going to back us in order to survive another season. Secondly,GR needs to intro, a few younger talent he has at his disposal. Remaining games should be used as a head start before pre season ‘try outs’ for the fringe players e.g. VSO,Arthur and Harding. Fans will tolerate imo a few more defeats in order to see exactly what stage our young guns are at.

  • Dave Mann says:

    A few more defeats Mitchell .. There only 8 games left ffs. KRO

    • Mitchell says:

      Dave.my point is that our push is over now for the play offs. Put the young fringe players in now and let’s see. If we lose a few games it doesn’t matter but it will give us an insight of Harding,VSO and possibly Arthur on a regular basis.if we don’t we will be back to square one where we start trying them out pre season a la Kiddy.Harriers friendliest etc.

  • Retired&Weary says:

    Seems to me that GR has bowed to the pressure & messed about with the team too much in recent weeks. Probably too late now, but back to the tried & trusted please! Definitely replace Cotterill & Davis with Buckley & Dutch Mike. Hope Lafferty is fit for next game.

  • ChrisG says:

    I always hate it when players go on a short warm weather training excercise during an international break, I just think they get into holiday mode cos they never seem to be able to get going once they’re back. Also considering we’re supposed to be broke it must have cost a few bob.

  • Dave Mann says:

    No , no way , no excuses , so don’t start looking for them please ,!its boring !! KRO

    • ChrisG says:

      I wasn’t making excuses Dave I was making a point, the manager takes the team away, they come back supposedly refreshed for the run in but I personally think it has the opposite effect. If it sounds like an excuse to you then you’re reading what you want, but it was meant as more of a criticism.
      I don’t know why you’re having a dig at everyone on here cos we’re all pissed off mate & besides I thought you gave up on the blues 2 weeks ago.

      • Dave Mann says:

        Our season finished after the draw to Fulham Chris to be honest but Ime a gluten for punishment and it’s roll on Tuesday then Reading next Saturday … Not meaning to slag anyone but it was such dross that makes me bloody mad sometimes , ah well at least the vile are doomed . KRO

        • ChrisG says:

          Dave, I came home & threw my season ticket in the bin, then a couple of hours later when I calmed down had to go fishing around in the bin to retrieve it.lol. Mate you wear your heart on your sleeve there’s nowt wrong with that. All that’s left to play for now is pride & if we top the 10th place finish of last season we would of exeeded expectations. At least we won’t he relegated….unlike some I know. Made me laugh yesterday the vilers holding up cards “proud history what future”. It should have been “ancient history NO future!!!.lol KRO

  • It means we can make it with the better teams Dave and we are not at the bottom of the table , I think that by sitting back against lower teams gives them the same opinion as animals do when you show fear , they attack with confidence , but GR now realises that we can’t attack with confidence because we are not hitting the net , hence the signing of Laff , but in saying that I get the feeling that you know something that I don’t .. Kro

  • Mitchell says:

    With recent results and ageing players coupled with regular ones who simply will not improve next season,I am concerned for next season. Today’s game put to one side we are not a lethal side who can damage the opposition. We have had our purple away day patches this season and overall not a bad season. Reality is that so many players have nosedived like MK,Gleeson,Maghoma and Cotterill with Vaughan,Buckley ,Fabrinni and Brock not worth discussing. We have enjoyed a flirtation with the play offs which is a bonus as in reality we should be in the comfort zone of zero relegation concerns.

  • andy says:

    Gary Rowett summed it all up with the word, quality. The players have gave it their all for the shirt and no doubt will do until the end of this season, which has been good to say the least. But when that quality was needed in front of goal, it has not been there. In the end it has cost us but quality costs money, something Blues do not have.

    • Richard Granfield says:

      Andy…..I agree quality is lacking, but Donaldson and Vaughan are lacking in CONFIDENCE!
      Donaldson has only 7 goals of which 3 came in one game against Bristol City last September.

  • Bluedad says:

    In the words of the Journey song “don”t stop believing” we all know it is over for this season but there is a lot of negativity towards gary and his team, is there really a bluenose out there who really really believed we could go up without the dreams. Todays comments are understandable following the disappointing results and performance. But I wont stop believingy that with 3 – 4mill Gary will get us promoted. Before i get shouted down I know we do no have that much money but the ownership has to get sorted at some point. KRO

  • Pods says:

    Trying to put a positive stance to what has been a terrible result and other teams pushing us almost out of site, i believe we cannot afford another bad result. I have looked at who has to play each other and their are some interesting fixtures.
    This may seem an almost impossible situation but still keep the faith until it’s mathematically impossible.
    Tuesdays night’s game should be interesting.
    And Dave Mann keep your chin up mate.

  • .KC says:

    Gosh Dave you must be something special, the amount of respect you get on this site.

    • Dave Mann says:

      I tell it as I see it .KC and I go to every game along with my sunshine band mate , no Ime nothing special just another Blue nose who keeps right on to the end of the road even when ime tired and weary I still journey on . KRO

  • atko says:

    We haven’t got the players to see us through to the playoffs. We were always playing above our level. There was no way we could sustain it for the full season. The problem is we are going to really struggle next season brought on by the fact we have signed up the whole squad to new contracts. We haven’t got much room for changes & to progress we will need changes!

    Two players that were key for us last year are a shadow of the players they were – Donaldson & Cotterill have been very poor of late. For me, neither should play again this season. That said, this season is gone now. My main concern is looking ahead to next year, unless we receive substantial funds for new players it will be a long, long season.

    Our current topscorer is Toral & with his absence after he returns to Arsenal we have nobody else to create or score goals. The remaining so called creative players are by no means consistent enough & in my opinion, our current squad simply isn’t big enough or good enough!

    People are saying we should have stuck to what we were good at & not changed formations. Our season would have been over long ago if we hadn’t, no matter what formation we played we still haven’t got anyone to put the ball in the net & that’s what gets us points!

    We desperately need things to move quickly in Hong Kong otherwise I worry for next season. We need funds for at least 6 new players!!

    • StaffsBlue says:

      Can’t disagree with any of that. I’m afraid the squad will need a bit of a revamp next season, just to tread water. We’re going to need two full backs a centre back, a complete central midfield and a striker who can, at the very least, shoot between those two white posts. Thing is, it won’t come cheap and I’m afraid that’s exactly what we are atm.

      What we need to aim for this season now, is to finish 9th or above. That will at least be progress.

  • Stan Moye says:

    The fact is we’ve been clutching at straws regarding the play offs for a couple of months now. Yes an improvement on last season, but l genuinely believe we have thrown away a great opportunity. We have lost too many so called six pointers, and got done by what we presumed were lesser teams. The one major criticism of GR is he’s shown too many teams respect, instead of us taking the game to them and concentrating on our own strengths.

  • swissjonny says:

    It was a nice distraction to fantasise about the play offs but I think deep down we all knew that realistically we were not good enough.I think also that deep down we all realise that with all the problems we have that we are fortunate to be where we are. The positives for me are that we appear to be growing the crop of younger players who will one day either grace our first team or at least be valuable assets to be sold off in times of crisis. We can liken our case to an unfortunate person coming back from a horrible accident.It takes time.You have to do the physio, the rehabilitation, supplementary operations etc.In short its a long,long road to full recovery.That road is often filled with set backs and frustration. We appear to have stabilised in the championship-for now.Next season we need to have some new faces and say good bye to some old favourites. That process needs to start early and we cannot dither.We cannot afford any more bad buys .Pavlos needs to tell GR early doors what he can have in terms of money and then the gaffer needs to go out and get it right. When things were flying I detected a little arrogance creeping into GR’s demeanour- well Mr Rowett you have done well but if you are to be a manager and not just a head coach you need to sharpen up on your ability in the transfer market. You may well not want someone to help you on this but sometimes we all have to eat humble pie.I await to see how our recruitment for next season goes- it will be critical for our long term recovery. KRO

  • Blue Steve says:

    With such a limited budget its our recruitment that needs has to be spot on. Sadly in the last 12 months the following have just not made any kind of impact. – Brock Madsen, Vaughan, Fabrini, Buckley, Shotton. The good new is that other than Fabrini (Who has undoubted ability and has suffered from playing in Torals position) all the others are not contracted to blues next season. When you operate within such tight budgetary constants every recruited player that does not work is a much bigger blow. I still think GR has done a great job and will do a great job next season.

  • Blues thought but unproven to be involved in energy building drugs years ago , it certainly aint happening know ..

  • Dave Mann says:

    Should have took some yesterday :-) KRO

  • Wife’s told me to get some ..

  • Dave Mann says:

    I’ve got nothing left after yesterday William , I left all my energy at the valley and coming home I was shot mate , might need them myself today !!

  • Bring back Hatton , Francis , Latchford as our front three , GR……..KRO

  • Dave Mann says:

    Don’t think we will ever better that to be honest . KRO

  • Dave Mann says:

    Wouldn’t it be ironic if Norwich get a point at least at palace next Saturday and Bournemouth beat vile at vile park to relegate them officially , it would be some concelation after that 0-8 drubbing … My only problem next Saturday is that Blues fans will be more interested in those two results than the game at Reading but being our position now I for once can fully understand it on this occasion though it has annoyed me at previous away games . KRO

  • Pods says:

    With out being negative , if we are still in this division next season which players should we be looking at?.
    I know we will probably have financial issues, but if we are to challenge for the play offs we need to improve drastically on this season’s squad.
    Let us know what you think.

  • Dave Mann says:

    Pods , your not being negative your being realistic and yes next season will be even harder to maintain a playoff place as the league in my opinion will be even stronger .. We need half a dozen championship quality players to have any chance of a push next season and as Bluey keeps telling us it won’t change until the ownership changes and then that doesent guarantee anything , it will get tougher before it gets better . KRO

    • Bluey says:

      I believe in GR`s ability and think he`s the man to take us forward.Let`s all pray for new owners asap to give him the necessary funds he needs for a promotion push next season. With virtually nothing in the coffers he`s done great to even give us a sniff of the play-offs….imagine what he could do with some real investment. KRO.

  • bluenose42 says:

    Oh Dave you bought tears to my eyes when you recited part of our most wonderful anthem,that’s what we do bluenose that’s what makes us great fans we KRO

  • ChrisG says:

    Although we could really could do with the ownership situation sorted out by the summer, which isn’t gonna happen, what we need more is an injection of cash, we need to bring in 5-6 players with a bit more quality than we have now. I pray to god that GR already has a list of players that will be available & has already made enquiries about some of them. I would be amazed if he doesn’t already know roughly what he will have to spend. The one thing LC did was to do the majority of his business right at the start of the window & that’s something we MUST do in the next window.

    • swissjonny says:

      Chris your right but I suspect that the poor bloke is working with peanuts.Having said that on GR’s track record on signings he must address the fact that he is a great coach and motivator but lacks skill in the transfer market.We all have weaknesses which we need to accept and deal with.GR needs to accept that he has a weakness and bring in someone to help him with recruitment. If we had an unfettered budget we could all do it but we dont.You cant be good at everything and the sooner GR accepts that he needs help and must delegate the better.

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