Curbs grinds out result
Simon Walton will certainly be recalled from Ipswich, which should offer a boost, whilst there are strengthening rumours that the wild man of China is going to be signed. However, it will need more than an ability to kick at opponents and spit at referees to solve Charlton's problems, the depth of which Les Reed (and by implication the board) seem unwilling to acknowledge.
Curbs gave an interesting interview in the Sunday Times today, although I think they have a nerve extrapolating from the fact that Curbs operated out of a Portakabin to a claim that he 'had constant "jam tomorrow" promises of a decent training ground.' One thing the board has done is to put considerable investment into Sparrows Lane which is a perfectly good training ground for a mid-table Premiership club (when we were one).
Curbs accepted in the interview that people had found him a '"cautious and unadventurous bread and butter manager." One of the reasons, he said, was the need to dampen excessive expectations at Charlton where they lacked the wherewithal to get where the fans wanted to go.' He continued, 'Eggert wants this club to push on, and he is prepared to back that in a way that Charlton couldn't. [Or wouldn't, given the sums made available to Dowie?]'
Curbs may not, however, find his Icelandic boss as easy to deal with as Richard Murray. 'At Charlton I had a cosy relationship with the chairman ... The one thing that I've found about Eggert is that he's very pushy and wants to do things very quickly. Perhaps I'll have to curb [sic] his enthusiasm a little bit.'
The article makes an insightful comment when it notes that 'Curbishley's glass, one senses, will always be half-empty rather than half-full.' Curbishley himself notes, 'At Charlton after a game I could go home and that was it. This job does not allow that. Our life is going to be different - but it could be excitingly different.'
The Curbs era is over. It is probably now too late to avoid relegation, but what we do need is a set up that will allow us a chance of getting back into the Premiership rather than falling through the floor to League 1, replicating Charlton's famous 1930s ascent in the other direction.