Cards face tough test
7:54am, Fri 22nd Jul 2011
Woking v Charlton Athletic
3pm on Saturday 23 July 2011
Garry Hill’s team have looked full of promise in their first two pre-season encounters but they should be well and truly tested on Saturday when League One Charlton Athletic bring their first team squad to Kingfield for this top-drawer friendly.
Tuesday’s emphatic 5-1 win over a young Reading XI added weight to the view that Garry has assembled a strong squad for what Cards fans hope will prove to be a sustained assault on the Blue Square South title. Reading’s Development Team manager, Chris Cummins, was clearly impressed, describing Woking as a ‘very, very good team’ and as ‘strong, quick, physical and gifted’. The new players – as expected from their pedigree – all look fine acquisitions and there is healthy competition all over the pitch, including from Academy players, Ola Sogbanmu, Ollie Palmer and Josh Griffiths. The only gaps to be filled seem to be at full-back, although several of the existing squad could play there if the need arises. On Tuesday trialist Michael Noone was given another ‘run out’ in the left-back position vacated by Aswad Thomas. Elsewhere, though, if everyone is fit, Garry could have some difficult choices in picking his starting eleven when the season begins.
Cards fans will be hoping that new striker Wayne Gray, captured from Chelmsford City, will be fit enough to make his first appearance on Saturday.
Charlton drew 1-1 in a friendly at Aldershot Town on Wednesday night, with ex-Woking and Charlton keeper, Ross Worner, in goal for the Shots. Most of the Charlton starting line-up played the full 90 minutes and manager Chris Powell said afterwards that he plans to give other first team players similar time on the pitch at Kingfield. Powell has so far brought in 13 new players this summer, so there is plenty of work to do in building up understanding as well as fitness. The Addicks beat Welling United 3-0 away in their opening friendly before beating Bristol City and losing to Cardiff City in a summer training camp in Spain.
Charlton start their league campaign on 6 August, a week earlier than the Cards, with a home game against Bournemouth.
BOOST THE BUDGET
The July monthly prize draw for ‘Boost the Budget’ contributors will take place at the game. There is a special prize this month of a season ticket for the lucky winner. ‘Boost the Budget’ application forms and Cards Trust membership application/renewal forms will be available in the Club Shop. The Trust is hoping to reach its target of securing £2,000 a month in ‘Boost the Budget’ contributions by the beginning of the season, needing fewer than 30 more contributors to sign up.
Admission prices to all the pre-season home friendly games are:
The Cards’ next pre-season friendly is at Kingstonian on Saturday 30 July. On Tuesday night (26 July) Hayes and Yeading play Gabala FC, an Azerbaijani side managed by Tony Adams, in a pre-season friendly at Kingfield. Kick-off for that game is at 7.45pm and admission prices are £5 for adults, £3 for concessions and £2 for U16s.
The Cards' next home pre-season friendly is on Wednesday 3 August, at 7.45pm, when a QPR XI are the visitors.
Come on, you Cards!