Charlton v Wigan: The game that nearly never was

When London-based Wigan supporter Greg Farrimond attended the "Bring £1 to The Valley" protest in August he, like most Charlton fans present, didn't know whether either club would survive to contest the new season.

Things are looking considerably brighter for Charlton now and it does appear that Wigan have a buyer. However, Greg still has concerns:

"There's still a question mark over our potential Spanish saviours. What are their motives? Why would anyone buy a third tier football club, especially in the current climate?" he asks.

"The positives of it all have been the way fans have rallied around. I was privileged to be at the recent protest at the Valley and to see the passion behind the Charlton cause. Living in Beckton, you guys are my new local club but of course, given recent events, the bond is much stronger. The mutual support from both sets of fans has created a bond and a friendship I hope will stand the test of time. One based on positivity but also one based on anger and frustration of the state of the game and the way it is governed. Football is on its way down a dark, dark path. Hopefully the actions of both sets of fans, from fundraising to storming boardrooms, will go some way to making substantial change."

The administrators (Begbies Traynor) have refused to reveal the identity of the preferred Wigan bidder as he wishes to remain anonymous until the sale is completed and EFL approval obtained. Sound familiar?  However they have stated that the bidder has paid a "substantial" deposit and will pay non-football creditors which will ensure the club does not pick up a further 15-point penalty for the current season. In the meantime, fans have raised nearly £700,000 to support the club.
The media have however leaked the bidder's identity as Jose Miguel Garrido Cristo -  nephew of the renowned Spanish lion tamer and circus performer Ángel Cristo.

Wigan have made an unpredictable start to the season. Losing 0-2 at Ipswich on the opening day was perhaps no surprise but succumbing 2-3 at home to Gillingham in the next game was not expected. They followed this by going down to Portsmouth and winning 2-1 and then seeing off Doncaster at home 1-0. Corner turned ? Maybe not. They were well beaten (0-3) at Crewe last weekend. John Sheridan, who took over from Paul Cook after last season's relegation needs to develop his team's consistency.

With the arrivals this week of Chris Gunter, Omar Bogle, Ryan Inniss and Ian Maatsen the Charlton squad looks a lot better equipped to make a serious challenge in League One. Only a few weeks ago we said we would be thrilled just to have a club to support. Now we'll be getting grumpy if we don't bag three points on Saturday. Still, who ever said that football fans had to be reasonable?

And as for that Jonny Williams. If he can do it for Wales he can do it for us. A hat trick is the least we expect.