Being a Charlton fan I've 'endured' so many more games of football than I've 'enjoyed' down the years. I've only myself to blame really, after all, nobody forces me to go through this. Kicks in the bollocks have come and gone and I know I'll get over them with the passing of time before foolishly going back for more. Highs and lows, rough with the smooth and all that.
Baring all this in mind, I've always been conscious when writing any new blog piece directly after a game to avoid being too reactionary - good or bad - but I can say with some certainty, knowing I'll feel the same when the dust has settled, when I tell you that Charlton were gutless, passionless and completely devoid of any constructive ideas today. Millwall were equally as awful, but a stroke of luck won them the 3 points in this terrible example of a football match. Deflected winner or otherwise, this result is very, very hard to accept.
The lack of passion I simply cannot accept.
No question about it, with the exception of Johnnie Jackson, Morrison and perhaps Church for his none-stop running, I needed to see so much more passion from that group of Charlton players today. Not even close to what I expect.
And what on God's earth was our tactics today?
If football was about playing meaningless, sideways passes across your back three (and occasionally letting your 'keeper have a touch) we'd be top of the league. Is this part of the plan? And then, when the crowd have grown restless enough and the opposition have had more than enough time to get their shape, one of the back three will lump the ball over our five man midfield straight to the forehead of the opposing centre-back who will clear the 'danger' effortlessly. If we're lucky we won't concede and then the cycle will begin again.
And what a time for my current favourite player, Pritchard, to put in a stinker of a performance. Stephens alongside him was frightened to pass forward and looked blinkered and nervous in possession. Neither of them willing to drop deep to encourage a passing game. Johnnie huffed and puffed - his 3rd game in a week - occasionally shaking his head in disbelief.
It seems that when one Charlton player has a bad day, they all do.
It's at times like this that I'm glad I don't live in South London. I only know one Millwall fan and I've not seen him in nearly 10 years. I will be allowed to forget this quite easily on my own terms, but many of you reading this won't be so luck with neighbours, friends, maybe even family maximising their bragging rights. I feel like shit, but I know you'll feel worse.
The next few fixture do not give much hope of a reprieve and on this form I can see us in the bottom 3 before the month is out. The big question for me is whether there are three other teams worse than us this season, because I'll bite your hand off for 21st right now.