Another year – more disappointment

Should we have expected anything else from the transfer window?

We wish Josh Parker all the best in his Charlton career but even the greatest optimist would find it hard to argue that the squad hasn't been severely depleted by January's dealings.

There was every reason to believe that an automatic promotion place was attainable if we had been able to hang on to Karlan Grant or if we had signed a proven goalscorer to replace him. Now, it looks depressingly like we will struggle along until the end of the season hoping to cling on for the play offs.

Lee Bower's exceptional achievement of building a competitive and unified squad this season has resulted in Charlton fans attending games with a spring in their step once again. Now would have been the time to give everyone another boost. But instead we experience that familiar and predictable January feeling of sliding rugs beneath our feet.

We wouldn't be Charlton fans if we didn't search everywhere for a silver lining. What price Igor Vetokele regains fitness and discovers his form of three years ago to forge a new and exciting partnership with Lyle Taylor?

Yes, it is a very long shot. But, on a freezing cold morning like this, the temptation to look for a straw to clutch is irresistible.