New Years Match Preview: Southend United v Charlton Athletic

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Charlton head to Roots Hall stadium, to battle against Southend United on New Years Eve, to play their final match of football in 2016. On Boxing Day, Charlton were able to secure all three points from their festive battle against MK Dons, and Robinson will be looking to expand on that, and hopefully develop a run of positive form.

The Opposition:

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In the early stages of the season, the Seasiders did not have the most prolific and positive of starts. In the first ten weeks of the season, they were only able to pick up 11 points, and suffered a notable 4-0 heavy defeat to Northampton Town. The press started to speculate of a possible early managerial change at Roots Hall, due to the negative form and some natives beginning to become restless.

However, Phil Brown was backed by the board room, and was given time to turn around the negative set of results the club had encountered, and Brown has been able to do just that.

Southend United now hold the final play off spot, in sixth position, accruing a total of 37 points, 11 points away from league leaders, Scunthorpe United. With the January transfer window swiftly approaching, and the opportunity for Brown to solidify his squad for a promotion push, the Seasiders could be serious contenders to join the second tier of English football.

Recent Form:

22nd November: 1 – 1 v Swindon Town (DRAW)
26th November: 0 – 0 v Walsall (DRAW)
10th December: 3 – 1 v Coventry City (WIN)
17th December: 0 – 2 v Oldham Athletic (WIN)
26th December: 3 – 0 v AFC Wimbledon (WIN)

The Seasiders are unbeaten in twelve and are looking to extend that run to thirteen on Saturday against Charlton.

Injuries / Suspensions:

Southend United are returning to a fully fit squad, with Ben Coker and Nile Ranger being in contention for the game against Charlton.

Charlton Athletic:

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On Boxing Day, Karl Robinson was able to pick up his first win of his managerial tenure at the Addicks, which coincidentally came against his former club, MK Dons. It took Karl Robinson three attempts, over three weeks, for him to finally beat his former side, thanks to an excitingly accurate long-through ball from Andrew Crofts, which outgoing Ademola Lookman was able to convert.

In recent fixtures, concerns have been brewing among Charlton supporters that players are not showing enough grit, fight or determination for the Addicks to achieve an instant bounce back to the second tier of English football.

Since Karl Robinson has taken the managerial reigns, he has showed significant passion in what he wants to do with Charlton, but has been unable to prove that on the pitch. Many fans are in agreement that Karl Robinson requires at least one transfer window in order to develop a squad of the attacking ability and style he wishes to implement at The Valley.

After Charlton’s Boxing Day league win, the Addicks currently sit in 12th, below their play off position target, accruing a total of 31 points. Charlton currently sit six points away from a play off position, and are 10 points safe from the drop zone.

Recent Form:

26th November: 1 – 1 v Sheffield United (DRAW)
10th December: 0 – 0 v Bradford City (DRAW)
17th December: 0 – 2 v Peterborough United (LOSS)
21st December: 3 – 1 v Millwall (LOSS)
26th December: 0 – 1 v MK Dons (WIN)

Karl Robinson will be hoping to develop a positive run of form, expanding on the positive result he obtained against his former side on Boxing Day.

Injuries / Suspensions:

Skipper Johnnie Jackson is experiencing hamstring issues, and is unlikely to feature in the game against Southend. The likes of Ricky Holmes, Ahmed Kashi, Declan Rudd, Lee Novak and Jason Pearce are still out with injuries. Chris Solly is back in training, but is not ready to return to the field of play as of yet.

That brings the total of first team starters who are injured to a significant total of seven, and will not feature for the game at Roots Hall stadium on Saturday.

Karl Robinson’s Match Preview Interview:

Prediction:

Due to the heavily injured squad the Addicks have at there disposal, as well as the lack of recent confidence and fight witnessed in the squad, Charlton are going to be significantly disadvantaged. There is also not a worst time to play Southend United, who are a squad full of confidence, and on a 12 match unbeaten run.

I believe the travelling Charlton fans (including myself) can expect a heavy defeat at the hands of the Seasiders.

Southend United 3 – 0 Charlton Athletic


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