Sunday, 17 August 2014

Deja Mou

Charlton Athletic 2-1 Wigan Athletic     August 16th 2014

Was it a case of Deja Vu at The Valley yesterday afternoon?
Well who remembers February 1st 2014? Charlton surrendered there one goal lead to Wigan at the DW stadium as two blundering errors from Yohann "Safe Hands" Thuram in the dying moments of the game.
Or back to last week for example when Charlton's one goal lead again was shot down in the dying moments of the game from a DEFLECTED shot from Tommy Smith giving Brentford a share of the spoils. Well as my old mate Justin Timberlake states "What goes around comes around" And football is no different in that respect as we saw yesterday at The Valley, as Franck Moussa's DEFLECTED shot in injury time looped over the despairing Scott Carson and gave Charlton all three points.

My day started by getting to Charlton around just after 1 and having a drink with mates in the Liberal Club. A lot of fans hadn't seen the new look Charlton side yet but were excited about what they had heard so far following a decent start to the season. The Liberal Club got quite full as usual towards kick off with most punters watching the early kick off game with another new manager for this season Louis Van Gaal not getting off to the best of starts on his home league debut at Old Trafford. Could our new manager get off to a better start in his first home league debut?

Entering the ground and up the stairs into my seat and it was back to reality.. Saturdays 3 o clock back again in SE7!
View From my seat
Pitch looking great, new astro turf around the pitch & my favourite addition of the club crest donned just to the side of the halfway line pictured above ^.
The Addicks lined up unchanged from the draw against Brentford.
Ben Haim

Unchanged team and you cant complain with that really although some players may have not played that great against Brentford but we didn't lose so Peeters decided to keep with an unbeaten side so far. Wigan boasted plenty of experience in there side with former Charlton player of the year Scott Carson in goal & others such as Fortune, McArthur & Andrew Taylor. Wigan tipped by many for promotion this year were to be strong opposition on our first home match.

Wigan started the game the brighter of the two sides with some nice passing and quick one touch football, with McArthur having a early effort at goal that didn't really trouble the keeper. But eight minutes in with Charlton not really creating much until then a nice across field pass by Gudmundsson found Cousins cutting in from the left side to fire a beautiful effort into the top corner of the Wigan goal nothing keeper Carson could do. A sublime strike from Cousins one that i never thought he was capable of! 1-0

Wigan then began to press more as you would expect with Fortune proving lively up top with a few shots & other moves came from a few free kicks and corners mounting pressure on the Charlton goal. Wigan had never scored at The Valley in there four meetings at the ground, but that all changed when a perfect ball from McAthur was misjudged by Wiggins it was collected well by McManaman who cut inside and fired a shot from a tight angle under the body of Henderson. Henderson would've been very annoyed to get beaten from an angle like that and Wiggins likewise to allow him to cut inside, but none the less a good finish by the lad 1-1

After that Charlton began to press again and Cousins got in the same position as where he opened the scoring and tried to replicate that on two occasions only to fire over both times. Gudmundsson was proving a nuisance down the right side and forced referee Andy D'Urso to brandish a yellow card on defender Taylor for a late nick at him. This season is seeing us play a lot more football on the deck and some great passing found Rhoys Wiggins in the box only for his shot to be straight at keeper Carson. There were other efforts from Vetokele & Gudmundsson but unfortunately tame efforts left the score at half time level. An encouraging display against promotion hopefuls Wigan 1-1

Into the second half and Wigan brought on old head Maloney on to replace Riera in the middle of the park.
The action from the second half
Both teams had spells of pressure early on in the second half, Wigan with an early corner and free kicks but to no avail. Gudmundsson again trying the keeper from Long range for Charlton with Carson having to produce a decent save, and he had to alert again tipping a Vetokele effort round the post. In the 60th minute saw the introduction of new midfielder Franck Moussa replacing Tucudean who had a quiet game, the sub meaning Charlton changing formation to to a 4-5-1 esque style.
Moussa ready to come on
Unfortunately Charlton were forced into another change when keeper Henderson suddenly went down injured when play was down the other side of the pitch and he had to be taken off which saw the introduction of youngster Nick Pope.Charlton were certainly on top, working well on the break, Gudmundsson and Buyens really working well in the midfield. Then came the introduction of Lawrie Wilson fresh from his brace in the week, and him and Solly quickly combined for Gudmundsson only for him to take his time and see his effort blocked.

Moussa then grew into the game and his run down the right side led him to shoot but not making keeper Carson work in the goal.

The best chance of the game then fell to striker Igor Vetokele in the final ten minutes he turned his defender with just the keeper to beat through on goal but Carson was alert and on his toes and stood up well and saved the strikers effort, a real chance for us which he maybe should have put away. Was our hopes for a perfect home start fading away?

As the game went into the 5 minutes of injury time Charlton pressed and a quick one two from Moussa and Vetokele saw Moussa shoot from the edge of the box his shot took a big deflection off  Wigan Defender Rob Kiernans leg and in what seemed slow motion the ball looped over Scott Carson into the Covered end goal & sent the Valley into wild celebrations. Bob Peeters ran around punching the air and near to the Wigan bench ( more on that later) and Moussa lapped up the applause of surely an opening home victory. Indeed that was the final score and a perfect ending for Peeters and his men to kick off the new home campaign with three points. Final Score 2-1

Celebrations at the final Whistle

My views on player performances..
Henderson - Thought Henderson had a poor game, he will be very annoyed letting them score from the angle they did under his body too & his kicking was very poor yesterday giving Wigan opportunities to come forward straight from his kicks. He had started his Charlton career well up til then and in the second half did improve only then to pick up an injury, hopefully not out for long but i have not seen the prognosis yet.
Solly- A usual solid display from Chris coming forward really well and linking up well with new winger Gudmundsson
Bikey - Another top performance by the beast! He certainly doesn't take any prisoners and reminds me at times of Jorge Costa, he really bullied players off the ball. The only thing next for Bikey would be to be more of a threat from corners.
Ben Haim - Really impressed with him, I would've brought Morrison into the team but Peeters kept with the same pairing and Ben Haim had a much improved spell with some vital interceptions and came forward well with it too.
Wiggins - A very poor first half from Rhoys with McManaman causing him a lot of problems especially with the goal too. Second half was improved and he came forward well.
Gudmundsson - Again like Ben Haim a much improved performance his passing is pin point and can really break up the defence. He ran forward well down the wings and some shooting on display too. Not as his best though expect a lot more to come.
Buyens- My man of the match, kept the play ticking over was to be found in both halves of the pitch spread the play well and made some big tackles in the centre of the park too.
Cousins - WHAT A GOAL didn't think he had it in him but wow well done Jordan. Looked really comfortable on the left and caused Perch a lot of trouble. Linked well on the ball and a great energetic performance again from him.
Jackson - A quiet game from Jacko, but did what he had to do well, filtered balls from defence to attack and broke forward well at times.
Tucudean - Took him a while to work his way into the game after he wasted a lot of early possession with some poor first touches. Didnt see too much from him and he was substituted after 60 mins.
Vetokele- Really caused problems for the Wigan defence with his pace, should have scored when through on goal but that's not taking away a good stop by Carson
Pope - Done well when he came on in difficult circumstances. Commanded his area well jumping & collecting well from crosses and punching away too. Liked a short pass from goal kicks which was nice to see also. If Henderson is out for a bit I'm sure Pope would be a great replacement.
Moussa- Looked lively, ok his goal was deflected but if you don't shoot you don't score.. so it was great to see him not afraid to have a go.
Wilson - Again carried on his fine form from Tuesday night to look lively again with his late cameo. Maybe to start against Derby Tuesday?

Big Bob Watch - Big Bobby Peeters was very animated on the touchline, which for me is great to see.
Shouting orders to his team
Quite the difference from when we had Curbs at the helm who never really showed his emotions, mainly leaving the shouting to Day. Great to see Bob's passion for the job early on in his tenure, he never stopped getting up from his seat and shouting instructions to his team and at times when he wasn't pleased. When the crowd were singing Bob Peeters Red Army he started clapping along too! Which again showed his overflowing passion.

His passion was there for all to see as the last gasp winner resulted in Peeters running down the touchline punching the air towards opposing manager Uwe Rosler  & his staff, who made it clear he didn't like the Belgium's celebrations by shouting a few expletives in his direction. All seemed well at the final whistle in this picture as Big Bob and Uwe shook hands. Until... See Below

 Away Fans - Wigan's fans always come under a lot of criticism especially from there prem days, but you have to remember they literally shot up the leagues from  the bottom and found it hard to derive fans from that considering they have many other football teams in the surrounding areas. The number of 447 away fans came which is decent for them considering they've many trips to London in the last few years with trips to Wembley. Didn't make much noise until they scored really. See Pic Below.

Home Fans - This season saw the club do a cheap offer of £150 season tickets in the far end of the east stand nearest away fans, a great initiative which sold out the end two blocks. Hopefully that will make our atmosphere better too! As for me when you go to away games the loudest support at games is normally next to the away fans so to have large numbers there now will hopefully increase the atmosphere around the ground. I thought The Valley was loud yesterday a nice song for young Jordan Cousins and a rousing "Bob Peeters Red Army" towards the end.

Moment of the Match - Although Cousins wonder strike comes close... Nothing beats a last gasp winner and the celebrations that go with it! Especially a goal that goes in slow motion like that too! Loved the scenes for that goal.

Moan of the match - Was simply having that fool D'urso as the ref , the same ref who called a game off at the last minute once for half off the side bit of the pitch where his lino would run was frozen and never thought to change the sides they run. Worded that weird but you know what i mean ;-)

Overall every Charlton fan came away with a smile on there face yesterday a good win against promotion hopefuls Wigan and even better to snatch it in the last minute. Onto another tough test in Derby on Tuesday at The Valley. Lets hope for a repeat performance. COME ON YOU REDS.

  This was until the German told Peeters exactly what he thought of his wild Celebrations & then....
Big Bob had to be restrained by his staff as he was unhappy by Roslers comments.

Managers clash the the final whistle 
  Yes maybe Big bob did get a bit carried away but you gotta love his passion!  

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