Charlton's form of late has been very impressive and it's crucial to continue the momentum in Saturday's early kick off against high-flying Bolton Wanderers. At times though we haven't always been at our best in front of the Sky TV cameras but we've every reason to hope we can travel onwards and upwards in the League One table right now.
Unlike some of our opponents in League One, we've a very long history with Bolton Wanderers. We've played them in everything from cup semi finals to the heights of the old first division. Our recent upsurge in form gives us faint hopes of some more big games to come, if we both make the play-offs at the end of the season.
Right now, that still looks a tall order and much will depend on how quickly and effectively new signings settle in. The return of Macauley Bonne has met with mixed reactions so far but he has come back with a sense of completing unfinished business. After last weekend's no-notice postponement against Peterborough, we have fallen further behind the play-off pack where opponents Bolton are presently sitting in fifth position with 48 points after 28 games. That position was further consolidated with Tuesday night's win over bottom club Forest Green Rovers.
Those midweek matches have also sent us back down to 15th in a season that sometimes feels like a drawn out game of snakes n' ladders. Significantly, we have played a game fewer now than most of the teams around us and we are in form. A win against Bolton could leave us around half a dozen points from the play-off places, if other results go our way.
Bolton though will be tough opponents, as always. They have several players on loan from Premier League neighbours, including the recent acquisition of Manchester United's hot young prospect Shola Shortire who could feature in some capacity. They also have the more established young goalie James Trafford who despite his United-associated name is actually on the books of the noisy neighbours Manchester City.
However, they could be without a few key players. Their talented Icelandic forward Jón Daði Böðvarsson is out for the season, having injured his hamstring. Aside from being an ex-Millwall man, he was part of the Iceland team that beat England 2-1 in the last 16 of Euro 2016. His striking partner Dion Charles may also be ineligible for the game, having been wrongfully sent off in the match against Bolton, after scoring the only goal.
If Bolton are missing Charles they could struggle to score, since he has grabbed a quarter of all their 36 league goals for the season. By comparison we have scored 40, though it is our defensive frailties that have let us down. If Dean Holden's men can stay solid at the back, as they have been doing of late, then they can have confidence in their ability to win this match.
Hopefully it will end on a high note with us putting a couple of goals past City's Trafford just a couple of weeks after our wanderings to United's Trafford which we are still buzzing from, despite the result of course.