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Charlton Athletic 1 Barnsley 2

“Many a good night at the football has been ruined by the football” – an old Chinese proverb.

That really was desperate last night and even the most glass half full Addick will have trouble fluffing that performance up.

From before kick off there were a lot of surprised looks amongst us after seeing Riga’s team. Harriott on the right instead of Wilson, no Morrison, Sordell again and no Reza or Astrit. In fact our bench looked pretty tasty and might of won us the old Evening Standard five-a-sides!

I have been keen not to criticize Riga as he and his grey suit attempt to make a silk purse out of a pigs ear. This is the Belgian’s biggest ever job in football and his manner has impressed me. He has kept the spirit aided no doubt by the likes of Jackson, Hughes and Morrison. He’s attempted to slow games down and play at a pace we can dictate, utilizing the midfielders more where we have more talent. More passing, allowing for better possession and less pressure on the back five. It was a neat tactic.

But, what has happened? He appears to have abandoned that approach playing more direct and tinkering with the line-ups to the real detriment of the team.

Why start an out of form Harriott on the wrong side? Wilson had to play in front of Solly, and in my mind he would have buried that header, batman mask and all!

Sordell simply just angered me last night. Honestly, what the **** does he care? Obika was better, but was often too wide, at Riga’s direction I guess. Nothing stuck to the front two/three as we hurled long balls at them. Powell got criticized for that, sometimes justly, but at least he had Kermorgant to aim for.

Morrison had to start, these players don’t need a rest, he’s an athlete, they would play every day if they could. Do you think Mo Farah’s not going to run for a while because he needs a rest?

Enough tinkering Jose, there is a reason why you are not manager at Stamford Bridge. Play your best team, motivate them, make changes if things need improving, not because you are saving them for next week or you played them in the wrong position in the first place.

Last night’s substitutions were odd. I can understand Solly, and it was great to the see him back, but why remove Poyet? Why not take the confidence-shot Harriott off at half-time, but instead wait until he was doing better in his natural left wing position?

I thought Riga’s inexperience showed last night, and at Brighton and other games where he has come up against a good side and coach. This is a big test for him now. What is his motivation? Will Roly pay him a bloody big bonus if he keeps us up? I really hope so. Will he sack him, has he another network job lined up? No one is prepared to say.

Sat in the dark, these are dark days for Addicks. Last night reminded me of those horrible nights under Pardew. We are a poor side, and we lost to a side perhaps worse.

Last night is gone. Riga has to play his best side on Friday, which will be without Wiggins. We have to be brave, have to be fearless and attempt to dictate play and create some goalscoring opportunities on Good Friday. Heaven help us!

Fellow Addick Bloggers at The Valley: Hungry Ted; Stickleback; Chris Powell’s Flat Cap; Drinking During the Game; Valley Talk.

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. ken from bexley #

    Can only think he took Poyet of because of the game on Friday. Best player by a country mile.
    Agree about the comments regarding Morrison, thought the non inclusion of Wilson in midfield was a little bizzare, again can only think that he knows Solly is not match fit !
    As for the forwards ,well no comment. Evina, ? no more than an ‘impact winger’ after 70 minutes I am afraid for me, and I am being generous in that. How many times did the forwards fall down last night? I thought Barnsley were one of the worst teams down here this season, so I am not feeling too happy at present, or hopeful.
    I was hoping you would have come by the supporters trust stall, to say hello. !
    Next time you are in town maybe, we do not bite…. well not that hard anyway.

    April 16, 2014
    • I think you mean Harriott not Evina Ken, but the point is the same.

      April 17, 2014
      • ken from bexley #

        I do stand corrected
        Thank you for the correction.
        Invite still stands about the trust stall visit.
        I have a trust badge for you, for your excellent site and service of flying the addicks flag abroad.

        April 17, 2014
        • Thank you Ken. I will definitely collect my badge next time.

          April 17, 2014
  2. Roberto Addick #

    Just how good is Riga? Now given the time needed to assess the players, why has he become the new “Tinkerman”?
    Theory 1 : He still doesn’t know his best starting line-up because he isn’t good enough.
    He’s stated that the defence and defensive midfield are performing very well. So why tinker with
    Morrison? And with the return of Solly, why not strengthen the right flank with Wilson moving forward? Can’t believe that Dyer & Matthew wouldn’t have advised him of Wilson’s worth on the problematic right side of midfield/wing. Solly returned Tuesday, yet Wilson is kept on the bench.
    Neither Harriot or Reza can play here: the first has lost all confidence and the second is too lightweight and can’t tackle. Cousins can do a reasonable job, but is better employed in the middle.
    Forwards a different proposition, but Riga’s constant “tinkering” is a huge negative. Sordell
    is awful, yet he gets a full game in last 2 matches. Total understatement to say we miss Kermorgant. There is no-one who has his guile, strength and ability to bring other forwards into
    play. Perhaps Obika with Astrit against Bolton may be an improvement with Reza and Piggot on the bench.
    Away from home he should keep things tight with just 1 up front (not Sordell) with support coming from Wilson, Astrit and Cousins with Jackson and Poyet in the middle..

    Theory 2 : Riga is subtly yet deliberately overseeing our slide to relegation on instruction from the owner. Duchatelet want’s to avoid having to pay the last purchase payment to Jiminez and Slatter – rumoured to be around £4million.

    Theory 3 : Roland Duchatelet is a wealthy businessman with an innovative idea about how to make Football Club ownership profitable. However, apart from SL, his other Clubs are all in lower leagues – they apparently follow his loan-between-clubs strategy, yet are all struggling and have low attendances. The success of his idea can only work if he eventually sells the Clubs or their best players for a profit. Selling Standard Liege for around £50million would make sense. He may then buy other Clubs or invest more money in another of his current Clubs – and
    Charlton may be next in line for this – or not!

    Theory 4 : Duchatelet realising that he’s grand idea was a big mistake wants to divest himself of
    all his Clubs and go back to the works of Marx, Jung or Warren Buffett for inspiration for his next challenge in Life.

    April 17, 2014

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