Sunday, February 26, 2006

Marcus Bent latest target for critics

There has been a realisation among many supporters that the criticism of Radostin Kishishev went too far, particularly booing him before he went on the pitch. There is now a grudging acceptance among the usual suspects that Kishishev and Hughes are doing their best to the extent of their somewhat limited abilities. One day we may well see at The Valley a midfield player who, if not as good as Makelele, is nearer to him in quality.

So a new target for moaners is needed. Step forward, Mr Marcus Bent. He is said to be lazy, not a £2 million player, no wonder he has played at nine clubs etc. etc. This is in spite of the fact that he has already scored two goals, one against Chelsea. Never mind that he gave Darren Bent the assist yesterday that was closest to a Charlton goal. As the Sunday Times put it in its report, 'Charlton used both Bents, Darren and Marcus, shrewdly, with Darren as the attacking spearhead and Marcus given a floating role.' But if one thinks Marcus was a bit off the pace (possibly with a niggle from the start of the game), surely it's a bit too early to write him off?

One can accept that football is one of those aspects of life where professional expertise and experience count for little. 'It's all about opinions', we're told. So people who have never played football except at pub team level think they know better than staff who watch the team in training all week and have access to very sophisticated computerised analyses of each player's performance. But, of course, part of the fun is debating the performance of particular players and how the team might do better.

What is a little difficult to accept is the constant negativity. It has been argued in the press that this is because Curbs has created unsustainable expectations at what is still a medium-sized club at best. But it's not just a Charlton phenomenon, it's found all around football, even at the lower levels of the non-league where the manager is unpaid and the players are on £30 a week tops.

For many people, football is an escape from everyday routine, indeed to some extent that is why all of us go. For me, one of the attractions is that I don't have any responsibility for what happens on the pitch. I don't have to train or pick the team, I can just enjoy the contest on the pitch. Sometimes it's not that enjoyable. But I think that is structural. The Premiership encourages defensive football because for the majority of the clubs escaping relegation is the name of the game. And a rather dull game it can become.

That's why all fans should submit their views on the state of football to the high level European Union review in which Supporters Direct is taking a close interest. You have until 13 March to state your views. Visit the Review's website at Review .


Blogger Kappacino Kid said...

I think when you see the level of criticism leveled at Curbs after his years bof success at the club, then it is not really a surprise that newbies such as MB get it in the neck when they do not immediately make an impact... or even if they do by scoring the equalising goal at Chelsea in their first game.

Our fans as with most willnever be satisfied, if we go on and win the FA CUp this year they will only say we should have qualified for Champions league, same if we qualify for EUFA.

11:12 PM  
Blogger Reet Smoot said...

i agree we should all cheer up we are all sounding like spurs fans. took a mate on saturday to the villa game he could not believe the amount of moaning from behind us. i just block it out now.

5:47 PM  

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