The young Finch of Charlton Live gives us his take on the season just gone.
Charlton’s season has been great, yet not surprising. Chris Powell and his men only lost 15 of the 46 games this season; the away form has been the best Charlton have had in the championship since promotion back in 1999/2000. Charlton have finally found a striker who will score 10 goals in the Npower Championship with Yann Kermorgant but Johnnie Jackson beat him to the spot of leading league goal scorer.
Our players have been on top form once again this year lead by skipper Johnnie Jackson and Charlton youth academy graduate Chris Solly as well as Callum Harriott who broke through in the second half of the season. Johnnie Jackson leads our goal scoring this year and made a huge contribution to our assists’ with 8 to his name. Jacko has been a key player this year and has had the best campaign of his Charlton career. His second place at our player of the year really enforced that.
Chris Solly continued his fine form as he notched up his second player of the year award in two years. The 22 year old again beat expectations and again was adored by our fans as his displays got better and better and even managed to score a rocket away at Bloomfield Road. Chris’ determination and willingness to win the ball has helped our defensive record with the help of Rhoys Wiggins, Morro, Leon Cort and other defenders he has played along side this season.
“Yip Yap Yann hes a big french man”. This year many Charlton fans have really dreamed of a team of Kermorgant’s and his form has continues to show why. 12 goals this seasons have also helped Charlton cement their place in the Championship and again scored a last game of the season worldy as he thundered an effort past Tom Heaton at the Valley. Strike partner for Saturday Jon Obika’s two late goals meant that Charlton would finish the season 9th instead of 16th in the league, his goal against Wolves practically relegated Wolves. Danny Haynes scored possibly the goal of the year against Derby as well as scoring with his first touch against Leicester but was injured later in the season and has not managed to appear since.
Ben Hamer had a great season yet again for the Addicks and possibly made a save that made our season when he stopped Ulloa’s effort in the dying minutes at the AMEX Stadium. Since he was dropped and replaced by David Button, Ben has been one of our greatest players and has pulled off many great saves.
Bradley Pritchard has also been a key figure for the Addicks with 13 assists. Pritchy is mainly a central midfield player but has spent a large majority of the season on the wide right. His determination in the middle of the park and out wide has helped lift the spirit and the play around the ground.
Our Season has brought ups and downs. Wins at Leicester and Blackburn with thunder shots from Danny Haynes and Dale Stephens are a couple of wins away from home that have been pointed out by fans as a main highlight. The home victory against Cardiff (5-4) has also been mentioned as a real highlight to our season and also a late winner from Obika against Leeds to keep the Addicks within touching distance of a play-off spot.
We have also had some downs as the reds failed to win a south London derby, two defeats to Sheffield Wednesday and being robbed twice by Birmingham City. Wins in some of these games would have assured the team a spot in the play-offs.
I also believe a special mention has to go to our youth system with regards to our u21s and u18s. The hard work they all put in has really paid off. Thank you to the likes of Steve Avory, Paul Hart, Jason Euell and Nathan Jones. The u21’s won the Kent Senior Cup with wins against Herne Bay, Thamesmead and Chatham on their way to lifting the trophy against Tonbridge. Also the u21s are in the final of the national division against Cardiff (Charlton Live Providing Commentary) after a 6-1 win over Huddersfield with u21 leading goal scorer Joe Pigott bagging four goals with Azeez and Feely adding to the list.
Paul Hart’s u18s lost on penalties to Huddersfield but managed to win there division on their way to the semi final with a comfortable win against Bristol City. Players such as Diego Poyet, Joe Gomez and Kasey Palmer ( now of Chelsea) making a huge contribution to the year as well as strikers Aherne-Grant and Sho-Silva netting the most goal’s in the division as a striking pair. Some of this squad also played a part in the run to Charlton’s Kent Senior Cup victory.
Let’s not forget the Women’s team managed by Bill Long who won the London cup against Arsenal in extra-time to give them a well-earned trophy. Captain Kim Dixson notched up her 100th game for the Addicks and she spoke to us a few weeks back about her pride of leading out the girls.
The season, on the whole, has been successful for Charlton. Cups for the women and for the youngsters combined with a very good finish for the Addicks’ senior squad. This has also been topped off by the great work from the Community Trust as they won the Community Club award from the Football League. Chris Powell has had Charlton fans’ heartbeats racing as the side finished just 3 points of a play off spot but Charlton fans will be desperate for the club to continue their fight up the league as they hope for a possible play off spot in the coming seasons.