In the black or in the red, I could never figure it out. But whatever, it's quite obvious that we've made a sizeable gain in this summers transfer market as more unwantables leave the Valley.
Another member of Dowie's 2006 summer blitz said goodbye yesterday in the shape of 19-year-old "combative" midfielder Simon Walton. A very mysterious player that not a lot of people actually saw, unless you were at Tooting, he seems to have spent the last year playing for somebody else. He's finally departed for QPR for £200k after being Dowie's first buy for us at half-a-mill and without wearing the Addicks shirt in a real game.
And to remind you, here's what Monica had to say about Walton back in July last year: "Simon is a talented boy and he might surprise a few people. He's very competitive, a very strong runner in terms of power and a great athlete who is very comfortable on the ball. We think he's a very good investment for the future, but looking at his attributes he's a lad capable of playing in the Premiership sooner rather than later as well.”
So all-in-all not good business for the Addicks but whatever, we've already spent the cash on another midfielder, Dean Sinclair for £125,000, who's described as "highly-rated" and Pardew offers us words very similar to Monica's really.
Pardew: "He's a good take for us and the challenge for him is to improve technically and get into the first team. If he does that then we could have a very good player on our hands. All Charlton fans will know that we're short of energy in the midfield and that worried me because my teams are all about energy. I looked at that central area last year and we didn't have the legs to compete in the Premier League. Dean technically needs to improve but the legs are an absolute definite - he's as good an athlete as I've seen and that's very, very important in this division. And he'll get better because he's only young."
Makes you wonder who to believe but probably the key words in Pardew's analysis are perhaps the disappointing news that he needs to say twice that the player needs "to improve technically" to "get into the first team", so maybe not a first eleven player then.
Whatever happens with Sinclair it seems to be clear that Pardew, with assistence from Peter Varney, is proving a good businessman as far as buying and selling is concerned. We're stood firm and got good prices for all the departures and pocketed a total of £18.673M in the form of 2.5 for Young, £673K for Dennis and the massive £15.5M for little Bent.
On the other hand our new look team has cost a total of £3.34M - Varney for 2M, Yassin Moutaouakil for £405k and Paddy McCarthy for £650K. Martin Christensen cost £250k and Chris Dickson a mere £35k. We've got loads of free Bosmans with Chris Iwelumo, Svetoslav Todorov, Nicky Weaver and Jose Semedo. Strangely, unlike last season, we've got nobody on-loan, even seemingly turning-down the offer of Ben Sahar from Chelski.
But there's still two weeks to go and even Pards says "We're not there yet" and there's still a few question marks. On our own side, Amady Faye was last seen walking off at Everton when he was replaced by Holland after 55mins and Cory Gibbs, although he did play the second half at Welling, was not included in either of the two games in Spain. Meanwhile, Marcus B will at least be working in the shop come Wednesday while right-back Osei Sankofa is another player on the sidelines who hasn't appeared either.
Meanwhile, life outside the fizzies continues to amaze. Its reported this morning that John Terry has agreed a five-year contract with Chelski worth a total of £35m earning himself a remarkable, and obscene, £135k a week. And if you really want to remind yourself of that other strange world we used to inhabit you can even buy the JFH bio for a second-hand price of only £2.80 over at Amazon. Its believed he's still writing an update for the latest edition, complete with details of how he managed to string Charlton along for a whole year while laughing all the way to the bank. Or should that read casino?