Sunday, August 20, 2006

Traore off as Addicks stumble

“Referee’s make decisions. I’m not going to criticise him, but in my opinion he got the first booking wrong”Iain Dowie

The manager’s fragmented and contradictory post match comments were the only thing I found amusing about our trip to East London today, but upon reviewing the evidence I don’t think either of the bookings can be complained about. Traore’s suitability as a signing was questioned on more than one Charlton blog before he joined the club, but regardless of footballing ability, if a player doesn’t have the common sense not to stick his foot in front of the ball when the opposition are about to take a free-kick, then that player shouldn’t be on the field at all. It was a stupid thing to do, and it cost us any chance we had of actually winning the match.

However, Dowie was correct in pointing out that West Ham should have already been 1 man down by the time that Traore endeared himself to the travelling support. How Gabbidon’s blatant punching of the ball away from Hasselbaink’s head wasn’t deemed to be preventing a goalscoring opportunity, I will never know. The cross came from out on the wing and was in the air at least a couple of seconds, so it can’t have been deemed as ball-to-hand can it?

Bent put the penalty away with aplomb, Reid looked useful when he came on and Carson made one spectacular save in the first half, but I can’t really think of too many other positives to take from today. The marking was awful for West Ham’s equaliser, and I counted four mistakes in the build up to their second, the worst of which being a comical attempt to clear the ball off of the line by Karkouri. Carlton Cole (I just knew he was going to score today) came on late in the day to rub salt into our wounds, but in truth the game was already over as a contest by that point.

I’m not going to press any panic buttons over this defeat however, we are a new side this year and the players were always going to need time in order to mould themselves into the finished product that Dowie has in mind. I said in yesterday’s preview that one win from these first three games would be a decent return and in my heart of hearts, I always thought that we would be most likely to pick up that win against Bolton on the 26th.

Let's just sweep this defeat conveniently under the carpet and forget about it. Hopefully we can spring a surprise against United in midweek.


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