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Friday, October 05, 2007

Preview - Barnsley (home)

OK, we'll start with the really bad news; Barnsley have never won at the Valley or Sainburys or Upton Park against us in 20 attempts. There that's over with and out of the way. And don't say I shouldn't have mentioned it, 'cause its already been highlighted on the official CAFC preview as well.
Anyway, better not tell the team as perennial Tier 2 they may be but right now Barnsley are looking pretty tough opposition and after playing the team with most yellow cards in the Division, Coventry, with a total of 18, we now face one known for its aggressive Northern edge - not another one, thank god Lloyd Sam's not playing - that have collected 16 yellows.
Barnsley, a name that rolls off the tongue and being the team that have spent more seasons, 66, at the second level of English football than any other conjures up distant memories of our past in Tier Two football.
But you can forget all that, the game tomorrow is not about the past, its about the future. We can talk of 46 cup finals, as everybody else seeks to put one over "Premier" Charlton, but this game against Barnsley is one that will demonstrate exactly where we are against a team on top of their form.

Twenty games at the Valley ( and elsewhere), and we have 13 wins, 7 draws and no defeats. Overall, its an impressive 17-12 to the Addicks.

The Opponents
Unbeaten in 5
After finishing last season 4th from bottom in their first year back in Tier 2, Barnsley are having a good run. In 4th place with 15 points, just 3 behind us, they've not had a defeat in 5 games. Away from home they've drawn with Colchester and Stoke, beaten Southampton 3-2, and suffered their only away defeat at West Brom 2-0 just over a month ago. They've also beaten Scunthorpe at home 2-0, their only other loss being an opening day upset 1-4 at home to Coventry.
So as a direct comparison against the Addicks, you'll be interested to notice that they've done rather better than the Addicks against both Stoke and Scunthorpe.

Who Are Yorr?
Brazilians? In Barnsley..
For such a died-in-the-wool Yorkshire side, there's a bit of an international squad up there in Barnsley at the moment with two Brazilians Dennis Souza and Anderson De Silva, a couple of Germans in goalie Heinz Muller and full-back Dominik Werling, an Hungarian Istvan Ferenczi, a Peruvian Miguel Mostto, a Nigerian Kayode Odejayi and not to mention Lewin Nyatanga from Derby, that have all featured this season.
They've got a bit of a sharp-shooter in midfielder Brian Howard with 6 fizzy goals, the second highest in the League, although 3 have come from penalties. Number 9 up front is the Nigerian Kayode Odejayi. But we don't have to worry about István Ferenczi from Hungary who, obviously not superstitious, wears the number 13 shirt but unfortunately his lucks out and he's injured.
And a name from the past is the Jamaican international, Number 20 Jamal Campbell-Ryce who made just 3 appearances for the Addicks in his three years here and signed for Barnsley in the summer.
The manager is Welshman Simon Davey, only in the job since November but already showing signs of stamping his own ideas on what was once a dour Tyke team.

The Addicks
Suddenly we're a Settled Side
Yes, it's probable that Pards would now be naming the same team for the 5th League game running if it wasn't for some diabolical provocation from Hull full-back Ian Ashbee last Tuesday. As it is Lloyd Sam will sit out his three match ban leaving a spot open for.....
Well, as we'll need a bit of width with Sam missing and with so many left-sided players, one thing that occurred to me is that he'll keep Andy Reid on the bench for the first half and give Jerry Thomas a chance on the left and play Darren Ambrose on the right.

Weaver; Mills, Bougherra, Fortune, Powell; Semedo, Ambrose, ZiZi, Thomas; Iwelumo and Varney.

Bench: Randolph, Moutaouakil, Holland, Reid, Todorov.

Meanwhile, behind-closed-doors, Cory Gibbs played a full 90 minutes against Ipswich in a Reserve friendly. Mark Kinsella said after the game, "Cory did okay. It was a good workout for him, and we'll obviously see how he reacts in the days after the game." Watch out, Chris...

What Does Pards Say?
Keeping Stum
Still smarting at not being able to play his settled side, Pards has kept stum about tomorrows game.
Home Win 2-1
It'll be a tough game for the Addicks, and Pardew's formation will be key. Tiredness, after Tuesday's brawl at the Gateway to Grimsby may be an issue with Chrissie Powell playing his hundredth game in 3 weeks and the little irish fella not renowned for stamina in this two games in a game crazy fizzy pop League.
But this is a must-win game and with no game for 14 days we have to stamp, not literally of course, our authority over one of our close rivals to get the three points.

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