Right so this may be slightly swayed by the fact we lost today and were absolutely dreadful but here goes! Today was ‘Football for a Fiver’ day at The Valley which might as well be ‘find a moron and bring him along day’ judging by the majority of newcomers that decided to waste their Saturday afternoon in SE7.
When the price of tickets is reduced it is like a magnet for all the plastic fans to come out of the woodwork. Now when you’re Chelsea or Arsenal that’s fine because these people can watch the games on Sky and at least have half a clue of what’s going on. Let me tell you Charlton armchair fans are a whole different breed of idiot. Having settled in my seat prior to kick off the excitement was beginning to build when over the tannoy I hear the two teams I dislike the most on this planet have drawn at Selhurst. Good news I think to myself, until some cretin a couple of seats down from us says “where’s Selhurst Park?”. Little did I know this was a sign of things to come.
A complete lack of local knowledge is one thing but throughout the afternoon I began to get more and more frustrated by the people around me. I must reiterate that this opinion has been exaggerated by the performance on the pitch but there isn’t enough time in the day to cover those problems! Now call me crazy but if I’ve spent money on something (albeit just a fiver) I’d try and get there on time. Common sense you say? Not to the Charlton armchair fan who has decided to turn up after kick off with a stupid grin on his face to say “we’ve all done it”. I haven’t mate and I’m pretty sure the 16,000 people who come to every other game haven’t either.
As the game went on it was apparent the guy behind me clearly just wanted to come to the football but was stuck with his little boy for the afternoon. Don’t get me wrong we all had to start somewhere but this kid spent every moment of the first half asking to go get something to eat until his poor dad gave in after 40 minutes and went up to the concourse not to return for the second half. If the kid doesn’t want to come, don’t force him, he isn’t going to enjoy it!
Being a Charlton fan I’m pretty used to us being behind at home against a team you’d think we would beat. That doesn’t make it any easier or any less frustrating. So after one failed attack I look around me expecting to see my fellow Addicks feeling the same pain. But to my horror most people around me appear to be women who don’t seem to know what day of the week it is, let alone the score! I imagine there were a few regulars about who were interested but by this point I was beyond logic.
So as the final whistle went and the Charlton armchair fans let out a slight boo, probably because that’s what people do when you lose apparently, I thought to myself is it really worth it? I’m sure the club get a slight financial boost on the day but the purpose of these offers is to get new fans to come back when the tickets are full price. This just doesn’t happen because the people who come to these games, quite frankly are just looking for a cheap day out not a lifelong hobby.
So there you go, rant over. Until Tuesday that is!