Johnnie Jackson when asked about lifting the Cup: "I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I'll probably give it a bit of a smacker and lift it as high as I can".
Well that's it then. Season over. Charlton Athletic, League One Champions. What a truly unbelievable season that will live long in the memory. I'm totally blown away by it all, if I'm honest. This promotion represents something far bigger than simply escaping the third tier of English football. This was the end of 7 years of gut-wrenching despair and decline when, at one stage, I even began to wonder if I would even have a club to support before long. Chris Powell has made an immeasurable difference to Charlton. What a man! Full credit to the new owners and Mr. Murray for recognising this club needed to regain it's pride and identity and for bringing in the only man who knew the club and supporters well enough to stand any chance of delivering it.
Sir or a Saint? God knows!
There can't be a football team the world over where the manager is so universally loved by each and every supporter. Not even King Kenny at Liverpool or Sir Alec at United could boast of such undivided support. When Chris Powell addressed the crowd after the game on Saturday there would barely have been a dry eye in the Valley. As Sir Chris paused for breath, the moment when the North Upper spontaneously sang 'We've Got Our Charlton Back' summed things up perfectly for every single Addick that has suffered down the years. Thankfully, Mark Ritson captured the moment wonderfully in his excellent compilation footage of the day which can be found here.
There will be plenty of time in the next few months to debate our prospects in the Championship, but personally, I just want to savour every last drop of this season before worrying about next year!
The only disappointing news that has come out of the Valley in some time is the announcement we will have an all black away strip next season from new kit suppliers, Nike. I think our current white away jersey has been one of the best designs ever (arguably better than the home jersey) and I will be sorry to see it go. For me, black should be reserved for the match officials.
With the close season now upon us, my posts are likely to be less frequent for a while. Many thanks to anyone who has taken time to read anything I have written this season and especially those who have commented along the way. It is always greatly appreciated. This blog was born out of those darker days (I guess it acted like some sort of therapy, to some degree) and so it is hugely rewarding to be able to post my personal take on such a wonderful season. There are some fantastic Charlton bloggers out there and to feature amongst them in some small way is a great honour. Never has there been a time when social media has bought fans closer together, and I genuinely feel like I've shared this experience with every single Addick out there.
I shall leave you with Martin Toal's rousing and emotional rendition of Nessun Dorma before Saturday's game and bid you a most pleasant summer break.