Season Preview: Charlton Athletic
Next up in the Vital Watford Championship season preview is former Hornet Chris Powell and his Charlton Athletic side...
After a surprisingly strong showing upon their return to the second-tier, Charlton will be looking to kick on this term and eradicate the hit-and-miss start to the campaign which ultimately prevented them from kicking on any further than they did.
It`s easy after a season of mid-table comfort to fail to build on that acheivement the following season and for Powell that will certainly be at the forefront of his mind going into the new campaign.
New additions have been slow in arriving this summer, with only free agents Mark Gower and Richard Wood arriving at this point.
With experienced front pair Ricardo Fuller and Bradley Wright-Phillips both departing, the big question marks hangs over the Addicks striking options. Only Jordan Cook - who made little impact last term - and Yann Kermorgant remain as senior forward options.In:
Richard Wood (Coventry City, free) and Mark Gower (Swansea City, free).Out:
Ricardo Fuller, Yado Mambo, Matt Taylor, Salim Kerkar (all released), John Sullivan (Portsmouth, free), Bradley Wright-Phillips (NY Red Bulls, free), Danny Haynes (Notts County, free) and Scott Wagstaff (Bristol City, free).Key Player - Johnnie Jackson:
The Addicks` versatile skipper broke the 100 league appearance mark for the south Londoners last term, pulling the strings from the midfield.
A one-time Watford loanee under Ray Lewington, Jackson chipped in with 12 goals from midfield - including one at Vicarage Road in a 4-3 Charlton win.
After starting his career with Tottenham Hotspur, Jackson took in loan spells with Swindon Town, Colchester United, Coventry City, Watford and Derby County before joining Colchester and latterly Notts County on a permanent basis.
Born in Covent Garden, the 30 year-old is an England Under-17, 18 & 20 international.Predictions:Tom:
"Charlton did far better than I thought they would last season finishing in the top half and much closer to the Play-Offs than the bottom three. Then again that was a false position for them. The division was unusually tight and they went on a good run at the right time.
"Team spirit and work ethic lifts the Charlton team to a greater level than the quality of their players on paper suggests but you can only survive on that for so long.
"To be successful in this division you need two or three stand out players and whilst Johnnie Jackson is one, they don't have anyone who can put the ball in the back of the net. They've lost 25% of their goals from last season this summer and if they do not replace them soon they will struggle badly."