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06/07: Preview: Charlton Athletic

Our Last Meeting
"It seems unfair to burden it with the word "classic". It was exactly that, and yet so much more fun. Really, it's impossible to capture it without immediately referring to an insane performance from Paul Robinson, who spent most of the first half stomping around to mark his territory on the left flank before leaving his kingdom to seek fulfilment of his schoolboy dream of being a dashing, swashbuckling goalscorer. It seemed that every Watford attack would, at some point, involve Robbo arriving like an out-of-control freight train going down a particularly steep slope, leaving opponents with the choice of getting the hell out of the way or getting completely flattened. At any moment, you expected him to get bored of all that attacking stuff, bound up to Alec Chamberlain and ask to have a turn in goal. Utterly tremendous, completely bonkers, and typical of the riotous entertainment on offer."

Ian Grant,
Watford 3 Charlton Athletic 2,
League Cup Fourth Round, 27/11/01

Most Relevant Aspect of Babycare
Babysitting. Yes, I know she's my daughter, but if Tsega's out then there's still this nagging uncertainty, this lack of security net; I'm still babysitting. But Rahelle will feed, and then sleep, and everything will be wonderful, and I'll even get up off the sofa. And just when I think I've got the whole gig sorted, she'll start whimpering. And then crying. And then doing her pieces. Which is every Charlton season for the last five years or so in a nutshell...

Going down instead of us because:
Move aside, gentlemen. There's a new "Role Model for the Smaller Club" now.

BSaD Verdict
Dowie's enthusiasm rejuvenated Palace three years ago, but he seemed to run out of ideas last season with a squad that should have done better. He's a big task on at the Valley where the magnitude of Curbishley's achievement could be revealed by Charlton's fate. Hasselbaink's not a bad signing for a side light on attacking options, but Charlton could really struggle - particularly if fate or form afflict Darren Bent's contribution. Relegation candidates.