Charlton made an empathic return to The Championship after a 3 year hiatus in English football’s 3rd tier, Charlton fan and avid bettor Kevin Crout takes a look at Chris Powell’s prospects ahead of the new season.
A record breaking season of 101 points last season was a superb effort considering by the start of the campaign around 22 players had been brought in.
Nothing quite like that this year but Chris Powell did say when he made the signings he was “building a squad for the championship”, I guess time will tell if he has succeeded in doing that.
Two new additions have joined to date; Lawrie Wilson from Stevenage who plays right back or midfield, my guess would be he will play more of a midfield role especially away from home as defensive support for Chris Solly. Also joining is Jordan Cook a striker/wide man who looks to be one for the future, he had a loan spell at Carlisle scoring 4 goals in 14.
Last season’s defence remains in place and rightly so after a season that saw 20 clean sheets, the interesting thing will be choice of starting centre back alongside Michael Morrison, Leon Court held favour at the end of the season, his bit of extra pace may see him continue ahead of Matt Taylor. The middle of the park could prove to be our weak link, at the moment it looks a little light weight, it remains to be seen if Hollands and Stephens will play alongside each other or Bradley Pritchard will be preferred for his more defensive roll or even new tactics are adopted with a new formation to counter the threat of more experienced teams. Up top Bradley Wright-Phillips and Yann Kermorgant will be the main attacking options, Kermorgant will terrorise championship defences with his power and aerial ability, whilst Wright-Phillips will be looking to prove his goal scoring record at a higher level. Danny Haynes with his pace and eye for goal could prove a good tactic later in games.
Three or 4 teams stand out in the championship, relegated Bolton, Blackburn and Wolves have made good additions whilst Birmingham have also added well although manager Lee Clark still has questions over his ability.
Whilst we can’t compete financially with those teams Chris Powell will have the team full of self-belief and confidence after last season’s showing, an exciting season awaits and one which should if mid table or better is achieved be seen as consolidation and progression after 6 years of downward failing.
You can follow Kevin’s Charlton musings throughout the season via @profitbet on Twitter or the excellent http://football-talk.weebly.com/.