So hot to handle were the Addicks in the first half of their first pre season friendly on Saturday..
..in the annual visit to Park View Road, that red smoke could be seen at one point - it must surely have been the Danson turf spontaneously combusting.
The blistering heatwave hitting the UK at the weekend also saw temperatures soar, and the local pub could well have used the services of Charlton's shirt sponsor to keep visiting fans cool. Luckily enterprising Wings' staff were on hand with plenty of liquid to quench the flames. Similarly one of Charlton's youth products red boots were on fire, he having clearly not read the usual script..
The first half saw three notable inclusions, two youth players: the aforementioned striker Joe Piggot (aged 20 - blonde hair red boots) who bagged a hattrick, and Morgan Fox who was untroubled at left back, along with trialist Richard Wood - a centre half similar in stature to Dervite.
We fans tend not however to get carried away by these occasions. But the Addicks looked fit and raring to go, even Kermogant who bagged the fourth goal and supplied more looked somewhat leaner than the previous summer.
With notable absences of both Hamer and Wiggins from both halves, the second saw other returnees in the form of Danny Hollands, out of contract Cedric Evina, returnee and new signing Mark Gower, and winger Danny Green who bagged a penalty in what was a somewhat less entertaining second half. Also returning was loanee Smith but appearing somewhat lonely up front he failed to make his mark.
The Squad - Make Do and Mend?
One can't help thinking at least another striker is needed with BWP and Fuller departing, with no cash so far being splashed in the summer sales. Unless some new recruits can be found a perhaps welcome influx of home grown talent, and another chance for those deemed 'out of favour' last season, may play a part in Chris Powell's squad this coming season, still its early days yet. Perhaps the reported £400k from JonJoe Shelvey's sale by Liverpool to Swansea, may be spent on last seasons 'promising' Spurs loanee Jonathan Obika, although that may seem a bit pricey perhaps for a striker who hasn't quite set the world alight in the top two tiers?
(Piggot, Guard of honour and Powell pics all c/o John Taylor)