The 2014-15 Roller Coaster Ride

A Review of Charlton’s 2014-15 Season

So, the Championship is all over and Charlton finished in a creditable 12th place.  The fact that we were the first team to qualify for next season’s Championship competition tells a story in itself:  Not good enough to go up (or even make the play-offs) not bad enough to go down (although at one stage it looked as if we might be).  If you just considered the mid-table finish and the extremely high number of draws this season you might be forgiven for thinking that the season one of consistent mediocrity, but it wasn’t really like that. It’s been a bumpy ride with two main peaks and two main troughs.

The first peak came at the start of the season with wins against Wigan, Derby, Norwich and Watford and an unbeaten run that lasted until mid-October.  Gradually things started to turn sour though as wins turned to draws and draws turned to defeats.  Other teams all seemed to have worked out how to stop us and if management had an alternative plan, the players never put it into effect.  A three month winless streak from mid-November to mid-February saw Charlton drop as low as 20th in the table.  Manager Bob Peeters seemed to have ‘lost the dressing room’ whist the club seemed in danger of losing its fans.  In a few short days in mid-January Peeters was sacked, Luzon was appointed and Meire was accused of lying.  This was the nadir of the season.

Guy Luzon did well to keep his head when all about were losing theirs and changed the team into a more attacking force that put together a string of wins in late February and March, scoring three goals on five occasions. This period saw safety guaranteed as Charlton moved into the top half of the league table.  Sadly it wasn’t to last.  Once a certain level had been reached, the wins dried up as the players went on their proverbial summer holidays.  The last month was one largely filled with frustration, ameliorated only be the demise of our leonine neighbours and win’s for the U18s in their league and the U21s  in the Kent Senior Cup.

The bumps and dips of the season are shown on the chart below, which uses an index rating to show the changes in fortune of the club for it’s league position, points taken, goal difference and goals scored.

Charlton Monthly Performance 2015-16
Please click twice to enlarge.


Charlton’s Diminishing Goals

So far this season Charlton have played 22 matches and scored 23 goals.  The goals to games ratio, 1.05, is not impressive. Indeed it is joint 17th in the division – on a par with Bolton and Millwall.  Best is Bournemouth with 2.27 goals per game.  Worst is Sheffield Wednesday with 0.73 goals per game.

What is most disturbing for Charlton fans though is the way that the goals have tailed off.  Only Igor Vetokele has hit the net with any regularity this season.  However he hasn’t scored in over a month now and no-one else has taken over goalscoring duties.  In the time since Igor last got a goal, against Reading on 8th November, only Harriott, Buyens and Cousins have scored, and they’ve only managed one each.  The chart below shows how the goals have dried up.

Screenshot 2014-12-21 01.46.39

Please click to enlarge

Charlton did start the season very well and boasted the longest unbeaten record in the division.  Those early successes were largely built on being very tight defensively.  Despite being in the play-off positions early on, Charlton never really dominated their opponents and victories were all by a slim margin.  This meant that it has only taken a small decrease in the number of goals scored to seriously effect the number of points taken:

Screenshot 2014-12-21 02.28.13Please click to enlarge

It looks as though Charlton will need to do something soon to increase the number of goals scored if the season isn’t to peter-out completely.

Charlton Athletic: Historical Timeline (1958 to 1974 – In The Doldrums)

From failing to get re-promoted in 1958 to dropping down to the Third Division

In 1958 the club failed in their bid to get re-promoted.  Defeat to Blackburn Rovers on the last day of the season kept them in the Second Division where they would stay for the next 15 seasons.  Years without any significant development and a pattern of selling-off the best players finally saw Charlton leave the Second Division in 1973 when they dropped down into the Third.

Club History Timeline 1958 1974

Please click twice to enlarge.