Friday, 27 April 2018

Dusting Off The Scarf


Towards the end of my sojourn in Lyon I was reasonably confident that a takeover would go through before my return (early April) and that would pave the way for going to the Scunthorpe game. In the event no confirmed deal kept me ambivalent and as it happened other commitments got in the way. This time around? Assuming a fellow Addick has done the necessary, I will have a ticket and I’ll get to my first game of the season. Hopefully there will be at least one more, I still haven’t been to the new Wembley.

Lest there be any doubt, for me this doesn’t amount to an end to boycotting, as things stand it’s a one-off. If we get promoted and Duchatelet is still our owner come August, I will not be there. And while it’s every Addick’s decision when it comes to a season ticket for next year, I hope nobody has renewed and will not until a sale is confirmed. In that context, a bumper turnout tomorrow tells a new owner how things can be, provides a reminder to Duchatelet of the extent to which he’s screwed things up, and would amount to a fitting tribute to Johnnie Jackson, even though he’s not going to be on the pitch let alone running down the wing for us and it may not be his last game at The Valley. Hungry Ted penned a splendid tribute to the guy and I can only endorse it, can only add that the opportunity to join in the tribute is alone a good reason for going tomorrow.  

Among the daft things that Duchatelet has said, the suggestion that protesting Addicks wanted to see the club fail is right up there. Rather we had reached the conclusion – based on evidence, after initially welcoming him - that our club could not succeed (however that is defined) with him at the helm – unless of course he changed his spots, which has never been on the cards. It must have been so much easier for him to believe his claim, given that the alternative was that there was something wrong with himself.

Equally, among the duplicitous and inane claims from Meire, one of the most insulting to fans’ intelligence was the one to the effect that (I can’t remember the exact words) most would accept the regime did a good job in its first season (remember that one: the sales in January and drafting in of utterly inadequate replacements, the sacking of Sir Chris ...). That season we stayed up despite the regime – and if we get promoted this season it will be a repeat performance.

Duchatelet hasn’t changed. If he had there would be an apology for his failed experiments with our club and for the insulting of the fans. All that has happened is that he’s convinced himself that he is far too busy to be bothered with us. The fact that his lack of interference, plus Meire’s jumping ship, have created better conditions for our success is no doubt lost on him. By the same token, if we get promoted and Duchatelet gets a better price, I really don’t care (of course if the prospect delays a sale I do). If he tells himself for the rest of his life that he was a success as our owner, I don’t care. Self-delusion is his problem. Like every other Addick I only want our club to succeed: promotion and new owners are not incompatible goals.

We all pretty much know the permutations for tomorrow: we win and the guarantee of a play-off place can only be denied us if Plymouth beat Rotherham and Scunthorpe also win (given that those two will play each other next week); we draw and it’s down to the other results and the final round of games; we lose and we really have to hope the other two screw up.

Does it help us that Blackburn are already promoted? Has to. Perhaps not materially, for sure it’s a tough game for us, but some impact at the margins. Sure they would like to be champions, but that’s just not the same motivation, especially so soon after promotion has been confirmed and as becoming champions is not in their own hands. Let’s hope – for our sakes – that Wigan move swiftly into a 6-0 lead at home to Northampton and the Blackburn players and fans can just sit back and celebrate their success.


7 comments:

peterS said...

Brilliant and succinct précis of the regime and time as always BA.
I have also boycotted the last 2 seasons (you pre-date that admirably) but will be going on Saturday thanks to a generous invitation to a Centre Circle jolly up.
Been looking forward to the game all week and I hope that you will enjoy it and we get the points!!!!
Desperate Pete

joeH said...

60 years ago 26/04/1958 we needed one point for promotion versus Blackburn Rovers and lost 3-4! Lets hope we can overturn that result tomorrow!
joe H

ginty said...

Sorry We will not be there tomorrow after 2 years of boycott you forget to remember the Valley and the Saturday 3pm K.Offs but we still look at the results first and await Roland to disappear back to his shelter!!

Andy said...

At least now he doesnt bring in players from the Hungarian 3rd division, sack the manager if he doesn't play them. Still selling our top young talent and not reinvesting the money though. Let's hope the next lot are better.

Anonymous said...

Attending away games has been satisfying my thirst for CAFC whilst not putting money in the rats pocket. Tomorrow's game and dare I say it a play off semi-final with a decent crowd at The Valley is a different matter however.

Anonymous said...

You are still saying the same old things, last week at Portsmouth there was not 1 protest song or any negative vibe, just true fans enjoying a cracking game of football with an amazing atmosphere.
He is selling stop trying to justify why you have not contributed to supporting this season,amazing how the scent of success has made people make an exception to going again.
Just support the side and enjoy it you are not changing sweet Fa with your boycotts only splitting the fanbase.
Hope you enjoy tomorrow you might be surprised by the positive atmosphere around the club!

Blackheath Addicted said...

Thanks for the comments guys, even the critical one. On that Anon, if Duchatelet wasn't selling then attending just wouldn't be on the cards, irrespective of atmosphere and performance; and why the reference to 'true fans' as if those boycotting are not? Now that is divisive.