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Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Table Toppers - But will it Last?

No time these days for match reviews and with other good blogs around its been a pleasure to read rather than write. And with the levels of euphoria around at the moment its just been a pleasure to be an Addicks fan wherever you live and to enjoy wallowing in it all. The mishap at Stevenage a couple of weeks ago is looking more and more like a bit of a blip and we must all be pleased at how the team has reacted to their first defeat. Three wins since then have kept our place at the top and has now given us equal most-goals in the Division with Huddersfield and the biggest goal difference to boot.


Now I'm not normally a pessimist but being a Charlton fan I do tend to look on the black side after all those years of suffering. Which means that lying quietly there at the back of my mind there's always an tedious itch endless searching for the banana skin that will prove fatal. So, after another long look at the Table and a feeling that a total of 37 points after 16 games was pretty good going I nevertheless wanted something to reassure me so I began to wonder what had happened in the past to teams at the top of Tier Three after 16 games.

Well, only one team in the last 10 years has managed more than 37 points in the first 16 games and that was Leeds in 2009/10 who had 39 points and, of course, got promoted in May in second place behind Norwich. And only one other team managed 37 - Brentford leading from Brighton in 2001/02 - so 37 is indeed good going but there's a long way to go yet so, of course, you all want to know what happened at the end of the season to all those number 1's that were leading the Table in those past 10 years.

Well, of those 10 leaders, only two failed to win promotion, Forest in 2006/07 with 34 points after 16 and Brentford with their good total of 37 in 2001/02. Of the rest 4 (Plymouth (30 after 16 games), Luton (35), Southend (33) and Brighton(34) ) finished as Champions, 2 (Leeds (39) and Forest (30)) finished in the second automatic spot and 2 (Cardiff (34) and Scunthorpe (33) ) went up via the Play-offs.

So the only ones that missed out on promotion were Brentford in 2001/02 finishing 3rd and missing the auto spot by just a single point whereas the worst failures were clearly Forest in 2006/07 who ended up 4th, 3 points behind 2nd place, although they were promoted the following year. Both teams lost in the play-offs.

So it all looks pretty good doesn't it but before you think that its all over bar the shouting, I should remind everyone that the Addicks have been in second place in the table for the last two years after 16 games played with totals of 32 and 28 points respectively only to fall away in both years.

Of course, it won't happen this time, will it, but I'm just going to check another couple of years to settle me down a tad.