Despite our league position, recent midweek games have seen some pretty disappointing gates at The Valley as the floating fan has presumably decided that his/her sofa and the lure of Champions League is a favoured option. At the start of this month we was down to the come-what-may hardcore as the rather generous official gate v’s Colchester United was recorded as 13,650. In reality, it was a good few hundred less than that as the figure would have included season ticket holders who never took up their seats on the night.
All in all it’s pretty disappointing that despite the tremendous chance Charlton have to finally escape League One – let alone win the league - the midweek atmosphere has more in common with a side in mid-table with little to play for.
Tomorrow we take on Yeovil, who, with the greatest of respect, will not be bringing much more than a few hundred fans with them. We could well be looking at another poor gate and a rather subdued and nervy atmosphere against an in-form team who will come to The Valley fearing nothing. Yes Charlton have a responsibility to lift the crowd and force the game, but surely the best shot to the arm for a Charlton side that have hit a slump in recent weeks would be to see the Addickted turn out in numbers.
Granted we’re in tough economic times and despite our lofty position the football on show has not always been top-notch, but as a regular home fan it does urk me a little to think that when Charlton are over the finishing line (note: confidence rather than complacency) those floating fans will all be out in their droves. It’s likely that with just 5 home games left this season some fans may even have considered their disposable income and chosen not to attend Tuesday’s match in readiness for the impending champagne-popping game, whenever it may be (note: confidence rather than complacency).
Of course, the reality is that it’s NOW that Charlton need that little extra bit of encouragement from the stands, not when the job has been done.
So, if you’re reading this and care enough, get down to The Valley tomorrow night, take up your position as Charlton's 12th man and get behind the team. For me, floodlit games at The Valley are something incredibly special and I look forward to each and every one. Charlton are tantalisingly close to the finishing line and three point Tuesday will be an almighty step forward.
Come on you Addicks!