Friday, April 06, 2007

A massive game

Charlton face the Massives at the City of Manchester Stadium later this afternoon in another crucial game in their battle to escape relegation. At the moment I would take a draw, but this is a game in which we have to try and get all three points.

That doesn't mean throwing caution to the winds, but the problem with a 4-5-1 formation is that Darren Bent is often left isolated up front with no one to hold the ball up for him and errartic service from the midfield, although ZZ playing behind him offers more options.

We won our first two games against Manchester City in the Premiership, with the famous 4-1 humiliation of mouthy keeper Nicky Weaver being followed by a 1-0 win, a 1-1 draw in the next fixture and then two defeats of 4-0 and 3-2.

Manchester City midfielder Dietmar Hamann is doubtful (ankle) and Usmane Dabo could replace him. Defender and England fringe player Micah Richards also had an ankle problem. Do they train on the rubble strewn site next door that was designated for the Casino?

Former Massives player Ben Thatcher is likely to return for the Addicks which should strengthen our defence and offer better distribution. Hermann Hreidarsson may take the central role where he is more comfortable alongside the increasingly impressive Souleymane Diawara, with the mercurial Talal El Karkouri most likely to make way. One prediction we can make with confidence is that Bryan Hughes won't feature.

Erith Addick Paul May is already on his way north on one of the subsidised coaches and will be reporting from the game.


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