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Happy New Year Addicks

Monday 1 January 2024

A very happy new year to all Charlton Fans in Scotland.
I have volunteered to craft a ‘regular blog’ throughout the month of January, though it might become more of a diary of events. Either way I hope it provides a worthwhile read and encourages members of our group and others to revisit our website on a regular basis.
So here we are into a new year but we are still in the same football season. A season so far that has seen mixed fortunes for Charlton Athletic F.C.
As things stand the men’s first team are very much mid-table in League One. Many ‘commentators’ see the January transfer window as being crucial if the team is to make a fist of challenging for a play-off place and possible progress to the Championship. There are many others who reason this season as already being over!
There have been lots of positive messages coming out of the Club referencing investment from the new owners but we all know it is never an easy task to land players who have been targeted. The January transfer window can be a very different dynamic to the summer window and is viewed as a difficult time to attract quality permanent signings. If this proves yet another false dawn as far as investment is concerned will it be down to a lack of injection of funds by the new owners or another poor recruitment process or just bad luck? Will we ever know for sure?
January has 31 days, so along with several other months of the year is indeed the ‘longest month’, but for reasons that are difficult to understand it often feels like January is never going to end! Worse still the January Transfer Window doesn’t actually end until 1 February at 11.00 pm, so we could all still be trying to make sense of things on Friday 2 February! That might mean us Addicks fans spending a lot of time wondering when the next signing announcement will drop into the social media outlets.
As well as the transfer window the first team have the small matter of 3 home league games and 3 away league fixtures to play. Whilst these games offer opportunities to improve the league position they might be games in which new faces start to appear and they will need to settle into the team quickly if they are to have a positive impact.
If that’s not enough to keep our interest the Women’s team are second in the table in the Women’s Championship (on goal difference behind Birmingham City) and still in the WFA Cup with a game at Ipswich Town to negotiate on 14 January. They have some crucial league fixtures too including an away tie at Crystal Palace. The under 18’s are still in the FA Youth Cup with a game at Bristol City in the fourth round during January. There are 6 under 21 league fixtures and 4 under 18s league fixtures currently scheduled in January. The under 21s are defending champions of the London Senior Cup and have a 3rd round tie to play away against Welling United but that isn’t until 7 February.
Bring it on I say! It makes for a very interesting period, the end of which we may be looking optimistically over the final 4 months of the season or we may be wondering how it all went wrong! More than likely there will be both good and bad over the next 31 days and it all starts this afternoon at the Valley against Oxford United.
As this game is not being played at 3.00 pm on a Saturday it is available to watch worldwide on Charlton TV. A single game pass is still just £10 and the coverage is usually very good. Treat yourself to an afternoon on the sofa while finishing off the last of the holiday food and drink before starting that New Year diet!
Well here is hoping for a win and three points this afternoon. I think most football fans are optimistic before the referee blows their whistle to start the game. Only by the final whistle do we know if that optimism was short lived and we were drawn back into the depths of despair by an opposition who had the upper hand or just more luck on the day!

Robert Anderson

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