This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Charlton Athletic have taken to life in the Championship well following promotion via the play-offs, with Saturday’s 3-1 home victory over Stoke City following on from an opening day win on the road at Blackburn Rovers.
Lee Bowyer’s side are now second in the table as one of two sides who have secured back-to-back victories in their first league outings, with Sheffield Wednesday only holding onto top spot on goal-difference.
So after such a good start to the campaign, could the Addicks be a surprise package this season?
“I really do think Charlton could be one of the dark horses in the division this season, despite many people tipping them for relegation.
“The Addicks have of course lost a number of key men this summer, but they have also recruited well and made three impressive loan signings on deadline day in Beram Kayal, Jonathan Leko and Sam Field.”
“The fact Lee Bowyer got this side promoted on such limited resources last season is also reflective of his managerial quality, and I think he can definitely mastermind another successful season this year.
“It was also important that they didn’t lose Lyle Taylor’s services on deadline day, so the fact he has stayed means Charlton also have an attacking figure to build their side around.”
“After securing a dramatic promotion from the third-tier last season, the sky is the limit for what Charlton can achieve during the current campaign under Lee Bowyer.
“Impressive in their victories over Blackburn Rovers and Stoke City, the Addicks will be confident of continuing their fine form when they host Forest Green Rovers tomorrow in the first round of the Carabao Cup.
“Whereas losing Patrick Bauer and Joe Aribo earlier this summer was a blow for Charlton, by recruiting the likes of Beram Kayal, Ben Purrington and Josh Cullen it could be argued that Bowyer now has depth to his squad which may be beneficial for the latter stages of the campaign.
“If the Addicks can extend their unbeaten run in the Championship until the end of August, there is no reason why they cannot build the foundations needed to push on towards a top-six finish in their first season back in this division.”
“I think Lee Bowyer’s side are already doing that.
“Charlton were many people’s picks for relegation this season, and whilst they’ve got a long, long way to go before talk of survival can become serious, they’re showing they aren’t in the Championship to make up the numbers.
“Bowyer’s side have a clear style of play and it has caught Blackburn and Stoke off-guard early on.
“Of course, momentum is playing its part, but you can’t help but praise Charlton’s start.”