Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Right, hit easyjet.com later on

Looks like we can start to plan those away journeys - guess what, according to this unofficial list purloined by Netaddicks, Sky's only gone and selected us for three games between now and New Year's Eve...

Sun 18 Sep - Charlton v Chelsea (4pm)
Mon 31 Oct - Charlton v Bolton (8pm)
Sat 31 Dec - Charlton v West Ham (12noon) (full list)

Except, of course, it turned out to be a bit premature. Mind you, given the record of the Premier League actually bothering to announce fixture changes, and the gap between them being communicated to fans, you can see why they jumped the gun, really. Although it's worth remembering the info below is still true...

  • There are engineering works between London and Newcastle on 13/14 August, and also on the whole east coast line on 27/28 August.

  • Monday, June 27, 2005

    Inspector Sands v cafc-twonks.co.uk

    Blimey, didn't take long, did it? Welcome to the contents of that dusty and unloved place, the All Quiet inbox. In the interests of a right of reply:

    Hello there i have just read your blog slating my site cafc-fans (cafc-twonks as you refer to it).
    Firstly i don't understand why you have done this seeing as we don't spam rubbish up as you have
    made us look.

    Secondly we make user egister so we don't get spam bots comign through our sites and in our content.

    So inspector i suggest you remove that asap or i will have to take action against you and your blog.

    Regards, Cafc-Fans

    Sadly, my commenting system is up and down like West Brom at the moment, for which I apologise.

    STOP PRESS: Another e-mail:

    Mr. ******** (inspetor sands) you have until tonight to remove that blog
    > or we will take further
    > action.
    > We are asking you nicely at the moment. If we deserved to be made to look
    > like spammers then fair
    > play but we don't.
    > I have already looked into terms of use for what you have done - and
    > technically what you have
    > done is illegal. Even though you haven't stated our full name cafc-fans.
    > Replacing cafc-fans with
    > cafc-twonks wont let you get away with it.
    > Regards, Cafc-Fans

    "Spamming" has been replaced with "clogging it up", to give them their due.

    Ping! Update, 8:40pm:Dear Mr **********, after discussion i have decided to let you get on with your comments and not
    take action. I would much rather have the amusement of reading your wannabe journalistic site instead. We have reson to take action against you but after doing research on your past i fail to see the point because it doesn't seem to stop you. As you have a track record of this sort of thing.

    Your criticism has been taken on board and it is now a popular discussion on our board - where we have a poll aswell.

    So by all means post on netaddicks, and your ever so quality blog site about us. Many people are reading and finding out what a fool you are.

    We all understand your crying out for attention - otherwise you wouldn't resort to attention seeking by criticising everything you possibly can.

    Remember were laughing at you not with you :)

    Regards, Cafc-Fans

    The top people's Charlton weblog

    Blimey - good to see a little mention of All Quiet in The Times' estimable The Match supplement today, even if it is quoting from my "I'm so bored I'm being driven to watch cricket" post from last week. Ooooh, my mum will be proud. Actually, I'm not sure they're being very nice about me at all.

    ON THE WORLD WIDE WEB, the football season never ends. While their heroes may be flicking through yesterday’s copy of The Sun and topping up their tans on Mediterranean beaches, some supporters are more likely to be found in the spare bedroom, tapping away furiously on their keyboards and doing what comes naturally — expressing an opinion or abusing their rivals. (more)

    Ho-hum. But getting in a NATIONAL NEWSPAPER is better publicity than getting a password for Forever Charlton and spamming clogging it up with links to a messageboard you can't even get into without signing up for. Here's tomorrow's headlines, anyway.

    cafc-twonks.co.uk Michael Owen to Charlton??? - have your say!!!
    cafc-twonks.co.uk Something we've lifted from somewhere else!!!
    icSouthLondon Steve Claridge to inject Milwall team with rabies virus
    cafc-twonks.co.uk Earnshaw - win his teeth! Cafc-twonks competition!
    cafc-twonks.co.uk Curbs likes Genesis!!!!!!!!
    cafc-twonks.co.uk Matt Holland! Discuss him here! With exclamation marks!
    Charlton Athletic Matt Holland wins Nicest Man In The World contest
    cafc-twonks.co.uk Lionel Blair - would he solve our defensive crisis?
    Charlton Athletic Kiely's milkman's daughter finishes GCSEs
    Charlton Athletic Alan Curbishley's Top 10 Genesis records

    Oh well. Roll on Friday, Football Book-Balancing Day, and maybe we might get some action then. Wake me up then, will you?

    Oh, and before then, here's an interesting Netaddicks discussion about Spurs, Chelsea, and how the FA/ Premier League are happy to let Chelsea tap-up at will.

    Thursday, June 23, 2005

    Next season's Premiership odds

    From William Hill, since you asked.

    To win title: 10/11 Chelsea, 11/4 Arsenal, 11/4 Man Utd, 20/1 Liverpool, 66/1 Everton, 66/1 Tottenham, 100/1 Newcastle, 200/1 Bolton, 200/1 Man City, 200/1 Middlesbro, 250/1 Aston Villa, 250/1 Birmingham, 500/1 Blackburn, 750/1 Charlton, 750/1 Fulham, 750/1 Portsmouth, 750/1 Wigan, 1000/1 Sunderland, 1000/1 West Brom, 1000/1 West Ham.

    To finish in bottom 3: 4/7 Sunderland, 8/13 West Ham, 4/5 West Brom, 4/5 Wigan, 7/4 Portsmouth, 7/2 Fulham, 11/2 Charlton, 7/1 Blackburn, 12/1 Birmingham, 16/1 Bolton, 16/1 Aston Villa, 20/1 Man City, 33/1 Middlesboro, 40/1 Newcastle, 40/1 Everton, 50/1 Tottenham, 500/1 Liverpool, 2500/1 Man Utd, 2500/1 Arsenal, 5000/1 Chelsea.

    To finish bottom: 3/1 Sunderland, 7/2 West Ham, 4/1 West Brom, 4/1 Wigan, 13/2 Portsmouth, 12/1 Fulham, 18/1 Charlton, 25/1 Blackburn, 28/1 Birmingham, 33/1 Bolton, 40/1 Aston Villa, 50/1 Middlesboro, 50/1 Man City, 100/1 Newcastle, 100/1 Everton, 150/1 Tottenham, 1000/1 Liverpool, 5000/1 Arsenal, 5000/1 Manchester Utd, 7500/1 Chelsea.

    To finish in top 6: 1/50 Arsenal, 1/50 Chelsea, 1/50 Man Utd, 1/6 Liverpool, 15/4 Tottenham, 7/4 Everton, 9/4 Newcastle, 5/2 Man City, 13/5 Bolton, 11/4 Middlesboro, 7/2 Aston Villa, 4/1 Birmingham, 11/1 Blackburn, 18/1 Charlton, 20/1 Fulham, 22/1 Portsmouth, 22/1 Wigan, 66/1 Sunderland, 66/1 West Brom, 66/1 West Ham.

    First manager to leave: 7/1 Chris Coleman, 7/1 Alan Pardew, 7/1 Alan Perrin, 8/1 Alan Curbishley, 9/1 Robson, 12/1 Jewell, 12/1 McCarthy, 12/1 Souness, 14/1 Ferguson, 14/1 McClaren, 14/1 O'Leary, 16/1 Benitez, 20/1 Bruce, 20/1 Hughes, 20/1 Jol, 25/1 Moyes, 25/1 Pearce, 33/1 Allardyce, 40/1 none to go before the end of the 2005/6 season, 66/1 Wenger, 100/1 Mourinho.

    Here we go...

    So it's Sunderland away as our first game - could be a cracker, although I've not really followed the Mackems' progress since they won the Championship. There's now the agonising wait for Sky to decide whether or not they want to show it (and it does smell of pay-per-view) before rushing to book a train or plane. Well, I'm up for the trip, anyway... away fans will have their travelling mettle tested pretty early on, mind, with the trip to Middlesbrough coming just a fortnight later.

    Suddenly I'm feeling excited, even though we haven't made any more signings. Perhaps it's the hot weather. The Sun says we've put a £2m bid in for Reading's Steve Sidwell, although the honeymooning midfielder says it's news to him. Sounds pretty good to me.

    Fancy joining in with a new fanzine? Click here to offer a name and/or your help.

    Wednesday, June 22, 2005

    Feeling the heat

    Hot? Sweaty? Bored? Well, it is the middle of summer after all. I'm even going to check out the cricket at Beckenham tonight, even though I'm not a big fan of the game. Twenty20 Kent Spitfires v Surrey Lions? "Well, it's Charlton v Millwall, isn't?" I was told. Or Palace, of course, but they they aren't calling themselves the Surrey Beagles, are they?

    A lack of visible transfer action is a little worrying - but it isn't as if the Premiership's been a hive of buying-and-selling activity so far. The Lee Bowyer debate rumbles on with nothing concrete actually decided, apart from the increasingly bizarre sight of David Sullivan positioning himself as Bowyer's best mate while himself aiming for good community happiness in Birmingham.

    "He was genuinely worried that one night there would be 10 Asians waiting outside his house ready to kick seven bells out of him." (more)

    Without anything to go on, the Bowyer ding-dong's been pretty unsatisfying so far, with a section of the "we want Bow back" types shooting themselves in the foot by repeatedly declaring that anyone who isn't keen on having Bowyer back is clearly some kind of national threat who wants Bengali spoken at the dinner-table, compulsory homosexuality on Thursdays and the Blackwall Tunnel renamed.

    Meanwhile, of course, the anti-Bowyer brigade could consider that a return home - on a free transfer, perhaps? - would send a message to him that this is his last chance, and I'm sure Curbs would brook no nonsense from him.

    More pertinently, with a currently-shoddy defence, is he really the kind of midfielder we need? All kinds of questions and one big debate we need to have (preferably without any name-calling) if we're even to think about him coming back. Which, at the moment, may not even happen. Football abhors a vacuum, and with nothing else to talk about, I'm sure it'll rumble on until he pitches up in Saudi Arabia or something.

    On a related note, the Evening Sub-Standard's named us the best-run club in London, according to a fans' poll. Bless.

    Fixtures out tomorrow from 10am (bookmark this), although don't be surprised if they start popping up an hour or so earlier - from what I remember, the press gets them an hour in advance. I'll be back here tomorrow night to complain about our first-day trip to Middlesbrough (Sun 14 Aug, 2pm, Prem Plus.)

    Thursday, June 16, 2005

    Other players, other clubs

    So Lee Bowyer's move to Birmingham has been scuppered by an online petition?

    Yeah, Jimmy Hill, as we used to say. That story stinks like a load of David Gold's old mucky magazines. A huge 220 signatures on that petition at 1.15am on Thursday, by the way.

    As far as Parker to Newcastle goes - well, he and whore-loving Freddy Shepherd deserve each other. Although it's pleasing he's gone for the Geordie dollar, or at least I thought that way when I heard the grumblings of a Spurs mate of mine tonight.

    I've added a list of the pre-season friendlies to the right-hand navigation, by the way - after all, it's a bugger to find on cafc.co.uk at the moment.

    Sunday, June 12, 2005

    Carrying the posts

    About 100 people turned up to carry the crossbar from Eastmoor Street to The Valley - the police even kindly stopping the traffic on Woolwich Road.

    The centenary party goes on until five - I recommend the tours of the ground to you.

    Friday, June 10, 2005

    Fish out, party on

    It looks like Mark Fish will be first out of the door in the Great Charlton Summer Clearout. Alan Curbishley told Sky Sports News the South African "wants a change of scenery so we agreed to that". So no more Jimmy Choo parties round at chez Feeesh, which MTV viewers will soon discover has a "dungeon" - "complete with a bar, poker table and Egyptian Mummy full-scale CD case". Jason Euell remains linked with a transfer into the Big Brother house, while I don't like the sound of the Evening Stunted's claim that Fulham are after Paul Konchesky. If they are, they're having a laugh.

    Darren Bent remains our only signing so far - but with a long way to go there's a hell of a lot of speculation. The Croydon Advertiser says we're onto Gonzalo Sorondo of Palarse, I know it's Clubcall but I reckon this Danny Gabbidon story has legs, the trail has gone cold over Oxford's Craig Davies, The Times thought we were after Darren Purse, while Darren Ambrose from Newcastle could be a possibility. I could go on, but I'd probably be here all night with players we've been linked with.

    Finally - the weekend's centenary events:

    The Addicks' Haddock and Chips Centenary Party: Starts on Eastmoor Street 12noon, continues to the Rose of Denmark.

    Centenary Party: Starts on Eastmoor Street 12:30pm, officially opens at The Valley from 1pm.

    To trust, or not to trust?

    After one day of celebrations, the kindergarten politics of Charlton supporters "representatives" rears its ugly head, spitting its dummy across The Valley.

    The story so far. There was once to be a street party. It was being arranged by a branch of the supporters' club, and was to be held in Eastmoor Street, Charlton, where the club was founded, on Sunday. But for one reason or another, it was decided to start it at Eastmoor Street, with a parade to The Valley where the club could provide tours of the ground and other things.

    But the gentleman whose idea it was objected to the new plans, and set up his own party instead. So there's a haddock and chips do at the Rose of Denmark, Charlton, tomorrow. Starting with a march from Eastmoor Street.

    Now, all of a sudden, he seems to be involved with an attempt to set up a new supporters' organisation. Enter the Charlton Athletic Independent Supporters' Trust. As well as lifting the list of Charlton books from this very site, it aims "voice supporters' opinions, independently of Charlton Athletic PLC and Charlton Athletic FC Ltd, on the affairs of Charlton Athletic". And where's it being launched? Richard Redden's haddock and chips party.

    For those unfamiliar with the concept of supporters' trusts, take a look at Supporters Direct. They're designed to take either shareholdings or full ownership in clubs as a check against irresponsible ownership. They've had bigger successes further down the pyramid - Brentford, Chesterfield, York and Exeter are run by their trusts, while Wimbledon's Dons Trust walked out on its club to set up AFC Wimbledon. Millwall and Palace have trusts, as so Arsenal, Spurs, and Aston Villa. They also have (moral, rather than financial) backing from the current government.

    It's not hard to see two targets here - Charlton Athletic Supporters' Club itself, and possibly supporters-elected director Sue Townsend, whose duties are likely to continue to the end of the year because of an increased workload for the CAFC board.

    To be frank, it's been a rotten past couple of years for CASC. It is percieved by many as being too close to the club, its east Kent branch split off to become the Charlton Independent Supporters Association, while it doesn't seem to act as much more than a travel club. Ironically, the street party came from the Bromley branch, the only one which seems to have the wit about it to reach out to the wider fan base.

    A Charlton supporters' trust could be a way forward - to unite fans who have strong opinions on how the club is run off the field, to invest in the club, and to act as a voice for all fans, not just the ones who use a travel service.

    But when it appears the establishment of a trust is used as a weapon in an internicine battle between various factions of the club's support, and is so closely associated with a man who - no matter how honorable his motives - seems to be conducting his own campaign against the club's management, the whole thing would appear to be a spectacularly unwise move.

    Trusts should unite, not divide. It should have wide support, not the support of a number of malcontents who drink in the same pub on Saturdays. This isn't a matter of "whose side are you on?", because we're all on the same side. I'd hope those involved in the Charlton trust take a deep breath, wait a while, and let cooler heads prevail. This is too important a step to be taken while in the middle of a silly row.

    (And it took only 20 minutes for this post to be slagged off on the mailing list by somebody who thinks he knows who I am! I'd better duck before another toy flies out of the pram...)

    Thursday, June 09, 2005

    Sam revealed (almost)

    Okay, I haven't any of the unveiling ceremony since I couldn't be there...

    ... but this was Sam being lowered into place on Tuesday. There's more on Netaddicks, since Trevor was around to put up the pictures before I could.

    That was in front of a group of about seven onlookers - some 300 turned up to see Sam in all his glory at The Valley this afternoon, and, seeing as cafc.co.uk is down (must be another signing coming along), I hope regular All Quiet correspondent Colin From Welling doesn't mind if I link to his pictures of the big day.


    Today, just think. Think of all those whose arrogance, corruption, laziness or complacency nearly killed us in the 1980s. We survived, and survived to be 10 times as big as we ever were. Where are the pygmies who tried to kill us now?

    And you know what? Sometimes I still have to pinch myself when I see the new north stand looming over Harvey Gardens. When you see the Bartram statue, you'll be doing the same.

    Happy 100th anniversary, Charlton Athletic.

    Tuesday, June 07, 2005

    Bartram statue - exclusive pictures

    Only kidding. A gang of club employees would kill me if I showed you what it looks like now. And bearing in mind Sam Bartram's daughter hasn't seen it yet, you'll have to wait until Thursday.

    But trust me, that statue is looking bloody good. And don't take my word for it, the word of the only other passing Charlton fan - a gentleman who saw Sam play for us, is good enough for me, and he was very impressed. It makes the Billy Bremner statue at Leeds look like a two-bob job.

    The unveiling's from 3pm on Thursday - Sky Sports News are meant to be there if you can't make it.

    Stage struck?

    Yup. An e-mail drops into the All Quiet inbox. It's from the organiser of a play called A Fans' Club, about the formation of AFC Wimbledon, which ran for a time at the Wimbledon Theatre last year. The show is coming back for a one-off performance at Wimbledon on 8 July before going to the Edinburgh Fringe in August.


    Towards the end of the play I am looking at having supporters from Luton, Spurs and Charlton come on the stage for the performance at Wimbledon Theatre. The idea being that supporters from all these clubs stopped their teams playing MK Dons in a pre-season friendly. Would you know of anyone who would be willing to get on stage for 2 minutes towards the end of play and deliver a short speech?

    I can't offer much apart from a go on stage and 4 free tickets to the show.

    If you're up for it, e-mail me and I'll put you in touch with the organisers.

    Thursday, June 02, 2005

    Making an exhibition of themselves

    To Hall Place in Bexley yesterday to take a look at the much-vaunted Charlton centenary exhibition. And you know what, it's not bad at all - although as someone who lives close to The Valley, it seems a little strange that I had to trek out to the outskirts of the capital to find out about my local club.

    But once I'd made it through the half-term traffic jams, I was rewarded with a small, but informative exhibition, which was doing a brisk trade. Anyone who's ever been into the boardroom at The Valley will be familiar with some of the exhibits, but the early panels of the exhibition are a reminder of the club's roots by the Thames. I just hope the exhibition makes it somewhere close to those roots in the future. Charlton House, or somewhere in Greenwich, at all?

    But if you're passing that area, it's well worth a detour to visit, and Hall Place and its gardens are worth a stroll around too.

    Wednesday, June 01, 2005

    At last! Darren deal...

    GEDDIN! Serious lunchtime dancing around the All Quiet front room...

    Town have reluctantly accepted an offer from Charlton for Darren Bent for an initial £2.5m rising to £3m on appearances. The striker will sign a four year deal today. (more)

    Bent said: "As soon as I met Alan Curbishley and Richard Murray I had no doubt whatsoever that this was the club I wanted to join.

    "I have been hugely impressed by their plans for the club, both on and off the field, and I am convinced Charlton can go from strength to strength. I very much want to be part of that."

    55 goals in 142 appearances. Thank heavens for that. Now, who's out of the door?

    Charlton in "cheap" ticket shocker

    After hearing West Ham had hoiked up their season ticket prices, I thought I'd do that annual party trick - compare the season ticket prices! Okay, I was bored...

    Chelsea £650-£1,150
    Spurs £625-£1,350
    West Ham £515-£745
    Fulham £469-£499 (with "restricted views" at £383)
    Charlton £385-£610


    Crystal Palace £450-£595 (steep discounts for very early renewal)
    QPR £450-£570 (huge rises this year, I'm told)
    Watford £380-£470
    Millwall £320-£435

    League One
    Gillingham £289-£490
    Brentford £260 (standing) £340 (seated)

    League Two

    Leyton Orient £300 (with £700 "gallery" tickets available!)
    Barnet £247 (standing) £342 (seated)

    Conference National
    Dagenham & Redbridge £170 (standing) £220 (seated)
    Gravesend & Northfleet £155 (standing) £195 (seated)

    Isthmian Premier:
    AFC Wimbledon £150 (standing) - £200 (seated)
    Bromley £120

    Arsenal don't publish their (high) prices, since Highbury tickets were all snapped up years ago, while I haven't included any family stand tickets here because they're a sod to compare.

    Most of the bigger clubs have offered discounts for renewals, although Palace's were particularly steep if you renewed before Christmas! Their season ticket page, boasting how old the Arthur Wait Stand is, is worth a look if only for a laugh.

    It's amazing what other clubs get away with/ how lucky we are (delete as applicable) - if we still run an Essex Valley Express next season, a seat in the north stand plus a bus ride to The Valley will still be cheaper than going to see the Hammers. In fact, we're only £85 cheaper than Leyton Orient - who'd pay £300 for that, for heaven's sake?

    In fact, a seat at The Valley compares well with all the London league clubs - even if the cheapest adult seats have gone up by 15%. It's easy to make a cheap dig about the club getting more "corporate" the longer we stay in the top flight - but if season tickets are going to be held down, the coporates are going to be more important as time goes on. Those new luxury East Stand boxes can't come soon enough.

    Now, tickets for Bromley, anybody?