Wednesday 8 July 2009

One month to go and (finally) things are starting to happen

In exactly one month's time, Charlton will open their League One campaign against Wycombe Wanderers. To say that we are not currently prepared for that occasion would be a huge understatement, but with the first pre-season friendly this evening, it's time to shape up.

Irony of all ironies, given the drought of news we have had over the summer, one of the stories on the official website reports on flooding at Bartram's. That would have been headline news a couple of weeks ago, but now it seems that things are starting to unravel and there is some proper news to report.

It goes without saying that top of the pile in terms of importance is the potential take over. With the cancelling of the supporters Q&A, as well as the BBC and several reputable newspapaers running with the story, it seems that there really is something in it. Reports suggest it could be completed in the next couple of weeks and that really can't come soon enough for the club to get its house in order before the new season starts.

Whether Phil Parkinson will be the one pulling the managerial strings under the new regime remains to be seen, but he continues to do so for now. Unsurprisingly, he has failed to convince Zheng Zhi to stay, although in all honesty it was never really going to happen was it? I know the Chinese captain wasn't universally popular amongst the Charlton faithful, but I will certainly miss his willingness and ability to give things a go from midfield.

Elsewhere, it wasn't much or a surprise to see Josh Wright or Mark Hudson move on to pastures new, although the fee we got from Hudson was certainly unexpected. The signing of Miguel Angel Llera should be welcomed, although if we don't want to end up in the defensive pickle we got ourselves into last season (Matt Holland at centre half anybody?), then we really need to recruit one or two more for the duties at the centre of defence.

Parkinson has promised a different side for each half in this evening's fixture against Welling United, and it will be interesting to see who is on display. For example, will any of the players out of contract feature? Will we ever see Matt Holland again now that he has decided to do his pre-season at Colchester United? Questions remain, but at least we are now starting to get some answers.

As I write there is further news with the announcement of our new sponsor, Kent Reliance Building Society, and a sneaky glimpse at the new home shirt which looks simple but actually not all that bad. They just can't stop feeding us information now they've started! I better stop writing and take a long lie down. Enjoy the game if you're going this evening and let's hope for a Charlton win to start the season as we mean to go on.

Tuesday 7 July 2009

Taking Things a bit Far

So... its been an interesting last two weeks.

Last week we saw the unveiling of Kaka at Real Madrid with 50,000 spectators and fanatics turning up to welcome the Brazilian to be Bernabau....50,000 people is a lot, but he is a magician with the ball....

This week we've seen Christiano Ronaldo become the worlds most expensive footballer following his £80m transfer from Manchester United. He was "welcomed" by 80,000 spectators and mentalists and in the end had to be escorted off the pitch due to pitch invasions! 80,000 people, pitch invasions... sounds bit much, but then again, he scored a bucket load of goals last season and is probably the best player in the world at the minute, as much as it pains me to say it.

Cristiano Who????

The biggest news of the week is the arrival of Darius Vassell at Ankarag├╝c├╝.....

Who, I hear you say? Well, I did too if that's any consolation. A Turkish friend of mine has kindly translated this for me... He told me that they were the Bolton Wanderers of the Turkcell Super League, last year finishing in 13th position.

His arrival at the airport was insane, with more than 3,000 people in hysterics, celebrating wildly like they'd just signed the World Footballer of the Year.

I've never seen anything like it before. I can understand getting excited for a big signing, but this is Darius Vassell.... I didn't even know he was still playing football he has been that quiet for the last few years!

They must all be praying and hoping that he emulates Milan Baros who left Portsmouth to move to Galatasaray where he became the leagues top goal scorer last season with 21 goals.

Personally, I think they've got a better chance of signing Christiano Ronaldo than Darius Vassell scoring 20 league goals next season.

So that brings me to the question of the post....

Would you have turned up at Heathrow wielding a flare, a bouquet of flowers and a scarf to welcome Darius to the Valley?