Meanwhile, there’s a football match

Although it was fascinating to watch the wheels of justice turning in Manchester last week most Charlton supporters will be relieved to switch their attention to the pitch on Saturday when the League One programme kicks off again.

It is scandalous that we (not Sheffield Wednesday) find ourselves in League One. It is disappointing that we won't be able to be there in person. But, nevertheless, the opportunity to engross ourselves for a couple of hours in a League football match comes as a great relief after all the anxiety of the last few months.

And where better to start the campaign than at Gresty Road where we have a one hundred per cent win record and have yet to concede a goal? A 3-0 win in March 1998 saw us on our way to Wembley and a 2-0 win in November 1999 was one of twelve away wins that propelled us back to The Premier League as First Division champions. Discerning readers will notice a pattern emerging - we have never played Crewe without getting promoted.

The Alex were promoted from League Two last season as runners-up to Swindon on points per game. This achievement brought to an end a four year stay at League Two level and was a personal triumph for manager David Artell who took over in May 2016 when they were languishing in 18th place.

They haven't played a League game since they beat Stevenage 3-1 on March 7th to go top of the table. That was their ninth consecutive home win in League games - going back to a 0-1 defeat to local rivals Port Vale in November 2019. However, they began this season with a disappointing 1-2 home defeat by Lincoln in the League Cup.

This is going to be a season where fitness will be crucial. Charlton will play 10 League games in the seven weeks to the end of October and a total of 21 by the end of the year. It is inevitable that injuries will take their toll and, unless the squad can be strengthened before the transfer deadline in mid October, Lee Bowyer will be forced to employ more youngsters than he might like. One of the young players available to him will be teenager Dylan Levitt who has joined on a season-long loan from Manchester United and who, according to Nicky Butt, is "the best passer in the club". Another is Charlie (son of Richie) Barker who made such an inpressive debut at Swindon.

Lee Bowyer gave a full and frank interview this week on the challenge ahead.

The bookies (Bet 365) price Charlton at 9/2 to win League One - predicting a sixth place finish behind Sunderland, Peterborough, Portsmouth, Oxford and Hull. They are offering 4/1 on promotion.

We expect that price to narrow after a solid performance and win at Gresty Road this weekend.

Information about how to watch the game on iFollow is here: