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New Article: The China Syndrome



  • or a comment by Mao Tse Tung when asked on the effect of the French Revolution: 'It's Too Early To Tell'

    umm, your commenting on an article you didn't read, did you Lincs ? :-)

    I am guilty .. missing the very last line is unforgiveable .. ((:<)
  • edited January 2014
    ...and the bit in the third paragraph too ;-)
  • perhaps we need to be reassured that rd is a proven successful businessman and he is working with his own money rather than a "mysterious backer"

    yes the previous regime did start in a blaze of glory as far as communication went but then only "communicated when it suited"..
    perhaps RD and his appointees will communicate more effectively when they have all the facts like to think that the new regime will do their utmost to protect their investment and that means for this season at least avoiding relegation ....i think we have more chance with rd than we do with slater and jiminez whose pieces in HP and SLP I find very cheap

    perhaps the time to ask this question is at the end of the season
  • edited January 2014

    The bad part is that that is just about all we know so far.

    I would say this is far from true. We know a good deal about him and his track record (regarding his, and his immediate family, owning and running 5 or 6 professional football clubs across Europe in recent years) because it is all too visible and trackable. There is nothing in that track record that gives me any optimism about the future. The fact that he has owned the club for several weeks now and has not seen fit to state his plans for the future for Charlton and exactly what Charlton's relationship, if any, will be with all the other clubs in his stable is a grave insult to the manager, players, staff and, most of all, the fans.
  • I don't buy this pyramid theory (or our place at the top of it). Is there any evidence of RD moving "good" players up the food chain of his clubs. e.g. Transferring the best Hungarian or St Truiden players to Standard? I can see plenty of evidence of him moving youth/fringe players around the place to plug gaps but I've not heard tell of anyone being robbed of their best players to benefit another part of the empire.

    Maybe each club is expected to stand on their own two feet and grow their own talent. The network is used to round out this talent, plug gaps in the network where gaps appear with surplus resources from elsewhere. Just like any business if you've got a problem you try to solve it with internal resources first before going to the open market, its the cheapest option.

    I give much more credence to the distressed asset theory and he can build the value for his network by stabilizing us and Alacorn (sp?) and building them towards the top divisions in their countries . Carl Zies Jenna have a longer way to go but that could be the plan for them as well.

    The one thing I've read in the last week that has worried me is the fact that RD did his own due diligence, hence the speed of the move. If he's paid too much that may influence his investment decisions going forward and the return he's expecting.
  • Good to read such a lucid and level-headed appraisal of where we are, Henry. As I mentioned on another thread, I feel sure Duchatelet will be aware of the fans' strong support for Powell; he may be wary of alienating the supporters so early - on the other hand he hasn't shied away from unpopular moves at Liege.
  • edited January 2014

    "The bit I disagree with is the suggestion that Monsieur Duchatelet has made a random decision to buy CAFC with no ideas nor strategy as to what to do next. At the very least we will be able to infer the strategy from actions we see happening - the obvious one being the signing of a striker. "

    I never said it was random. But I did say people, including you, are making assumptions that there is a grand strategy rather than it being an opportunistic purchase of a distressed company.

    We can't infer strategy from what we see happening, least of all signing a striker as it hasn't happened and if and when it does what does it show. That we needed a striker not what the long term strategy is.

    But there is a difference already - reponses from the club about the FA cup and the state of the pitch after the Trust and fans forum raised questions have been precise and timely. And the new (old!) chair has agreed to a meeting in a month or so.

    But it hasn't changed. The communication around the pitch and cancelled games was very poor and reactive. Then the response, which was more professional, came in the local press. The only difference was that is was in the News Shopper not the SLP

    And it was all operational, not strategic. KM arrives and the announcement comes days later, doesn't even give her job title let alone her role, how long she will be around, will there be other appointments.

    And yes Richard Murray has agreed to a meeting in a "month or so". Already been put back to a vague time in the future and it is not as if RM ever stopped doing meetings. 20 years now he's been coming to Bromley Addicks (7 May this season in case you wondered) so while that is great and RM offers continuity and experience it is not the "new era" in communication trumpeted by the Trust just yet.
    Chizz said:

    Of course, the plan might be to provide something missing from Charlton for twenty years: slow, steady progress.

    I'd be content with that but as you say it "might" be. It is not an unreasonable assumption but an assumption all the same.

    t is the lack of a clear vision (even Mickey Blue Moon said he didn't know what RD's vision was) or plan that is concerning.

  • edited January 2014
    ^^^ I again plead guilty .. those who thought that the takeover/revolution would bring about immediate investment and radical change will probably be disappointed in the short term.
    I expected that some money would be made available as it is obvious that the team needs strengthening to stave off any fears of relegation. Some money seems to have been 'pumped in', but for what motive.
    Three years ago, a comparatively small amount of money allowed Powell to entirely rebuild the team, to bring in players that he had scouted, that he knew well and wanted, this brought success albeit in a lower division.
    I am surprised that the new regime has so far, only released enough cash to allow for a few temporary moves, whether Powell is/was in favour of taking on the new players is not known. I suspect that he would rather have signed a few English/British players rather than a group of Europeans whom he has hardly had time to assess.
    The transfers look to me as though CAFC is being used as a testing ground for players who in the long term are destined to return to Belgium as toughened up and experienced members for the Standard Liege squad.
    It IS far too early to tell.
    I have said elsewhere on here that I suspect that this season is pivotal as to the future for the club. If we avoid relegation, then substantial funds will be made available to take the club forward. If we are relegated, then (I suspect) CAFC will simply be used as a nursery for the development of Standard Liege players .. that would mean so far as I am concerned, that CAFC will have changed so radically in concept that it will never 'recover' and will never again be a fully independent club able to develop in English football, free from interference and the stigma of being merely a satellite club.
    As to Chris Powell. He is not yet the 'perfect manager'. But what he has done is to restore faith in CAFC amongst many fans, to achieve success on the field, to struggle along with no funds, with uncertainty as to the future and with no concrete plans as to the future as far as 'we' know.
    I have often criticised Powell's team selections and tactics, I have never and never will criticise his credibility, his good nature, his commitment and integrity.
    As to the 'future', may we live in times that are interesting without being too worrying and may we not have to wait 250 years for the outcome of the 'Belgian Revolution' to become clear
  • There is every indication that we face a radical change in the way the club is run with, I suspect, no parallels In British football or, perhaps, within Europe as a whole. It gives ample scope for trying to second-guess what will happen next but, having bought a club loosing £5m+ a year, it is reasonable to assume that RD will be looking for success on the pitch. Wether or not we as fans will be happy with the way he achieves this is an open question. What is clear is that he is his own man in these matters. We have no option but wait and see.
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  • There is a poster called Angeldust on the excellent Into The Valley site, who has made consistently informed comments on the takeover. He is well worth reading, as he is clearly in the know.

    He says today that RD has been given a list of players by Powell that he wants to sign, and to watch this space as a bumpy ride is ahead. As I say, he has consistently proved to be the most well informed insider over the last two months, so we should take his comments seriously in my view.
  • Thanks Jessie, put that know nothing Stu for SE7 Hull Kunning in his place : - )
  • Rothko said:

    Well my view is, that RD has walked in to a situation that was far far worse then expected, and the fire fighting to keep everything sorted and on a stable footing has been huge.

    This weird expectation that he should sort 2 years of chronic under investment out in 10 days, is what drives me mad about football supporters, no patiences, and a now now now attitude that makes 3 years old look reasonable.

  • On the subject of Chinese wisdom, "A diamond with a flaw is worth more than a pebble without imperfections".

    Let's not go swapping our diamond for a pebble.
  • Outs to Warren Place (Insufferable Addick?) on getting banned in 15 posts.
  • A conspiracy theory .. Standard Liege has chances of getting into the European League before much longer ... that's where the money is and Belgium with its strong National team needs a strong club or two to maintain and develop football's credibility in the country .. .. is the strategy of the new regime to install other clubs around Europe as nurseries/proving grounds for potential S L recruits ?
  • dickplumb said:

    There is a poster called Angeldust on the excellent Into The Valley site, who has made consistently informed comments on the takeover. He is well worth reading, as he is clearly in the know.

    He says today that RD has been given a list of players by Powell that he wants to sign, and to watch this space as a bumpy ride is ahead. As I say, he has consistently proved to be the most well informed insider over the last two months, so we should take his comments seriously in my view.

    Hello Nick, you nearly post on as many forums as me.

    at least you do it under one identity Dick.

    I think !

  • Rothko said:

    Outs to Warren Place (Insufferable Addick?) on getting banned in 15 posts.

    Dreadful standard of trolling from the off 2/10.
  • A plausible theory Lincs but a costly way to achieve it if we go down to Legue 1. He could still achieve that objective by further investing in us aso that we are serious contenders for promotion. If that comes about then it could be very interesting all round! Whether we like it or not we no longer stand alone as a football club.
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  • Doubt we are going to be used as a nursery club, there are cheaper options both here and overseas. The value of being successful at football in Belgium compared to other countries also goes against the idea of us being used a nursery club.

    It may be instructive to look at potential real estate issues relating to other clubs in the owners stable.

    As other have said by the end of the transfer window, we may have a better idea of the direction the club is heading. But so far it is positive, even if this is not as positive as some would like. The squad is stronger (it may be slight but it is stronger for the additions), steps have been taken to address the state of the pitch (albeit only in the short term so far) and transport has been provided free for some fans attending the rearranged Barnsley fixture.
  • The only vague link I can think of with his clubs is that he seems to be favouring run down capital city teams.

    Us in London, probably the best available option regarding cost, history and place in 2nd div. Upjesti of Bucharest and some small Spanish team (Madrid, Atletico and Getafe were probably out of range). OK it falls down with Carl Zeiss Jena but then football in Germany is not strong in Berlin. Brussels only has Anderlecht and they would be out of reach/Belguim is a small country.

    So based on next to nothing he is either looking at real estate or he plans to be able to hover up and spot talent from capital cities.

    I load of old rubbish I know, but can somebody clever take that theory any further?
  • ^^^ Carl Zeiss do not play in Berlin and Ujpest play in Budapest .. and SE7 .. RUN DOWN !!! .. (I'd stay hidden in Spain if I were you) ... otherwise an interesting theory ((:>)
  • I suspect that even if Duchatelet does, ultimately, communicate more often than his predecessors, the odds are that we'll actually know even less about what's likely to happen.

    The fact is that for all their mystery, the objectives of Jimenez et al were always fairly conventional and transparent. By contrast, I fear that Duchatelet is likely to prove to be far more unpredictable and, potentially, radical. I doubt that even he knows what he might do over the next three years.

    Hopefully, over the next few weeks and months we'll get some clues to what he might have in mind. The more he does the more we'll know.
  • Hope Roland is reading this thread.
  • Superb post @Grapevine49.

    If you're right that Duchatelet has a vision and is developing a strategy to realise it, then I'd expect to see him make some managerial appointments consistent with his goals. It will be fascinating to see how this evolves.
  • edited January 2014
    @Grapevine49 .... We join a network of 6 clubs with STVV, Standard Liege, Carl Zeiss Jena, Ujpest and Alcorcon). There may be further additions. Each can be viewed as its own “project” but with local variations there is commonality of product, of market, of target audience, of supply and resource. Each contributes not only its own but a collective sphere of influence.

    Whether by accident or design access to a pool of professional managers, coaches and playing talent across 5 markets operating at multiple levels, offers wide access to local market intelligence, a broad pool of resource and a platform able to phase and broaden player development in support of player pipelines from across the world.

    Though many arrogantly disparage the standard of other European leagues take a look at the PL and ask yourself where so many of these players started their careers.

    The CAFC addition to the network offers us potential access to a larger pool of talent while giving RD the opportunity to secure UK media revenues. IT IS UNCHARTED TERRITORY but RD has shown he is happy to operate “outside the box”. In the insular world of football that maybe no bad thing – something does have to change. .. unquote

    Call me old fashioned, but the 'Tesco' approach to football ownership and marketing does not appeal to me at all. I don't want an ever changing cast of players, managers and coaches who are all part of one huge happy Euro project, in fact not only do I not want it, I do not believe that this is the real aim of the new owner. I suspect that Standard Liege is the jewel in this particular crown and that the future for all the other clubs in the conglomerate will be subservient to S L's future development and hoped for success.
    Excuse once more the shopping analogy but I would prefer CAFC to be more a Harrods, even a prosperous corner shop than a mere outpost of Teso, Lidl, Aldi or Spar. As I have said, I am old fashioned. Football clubs should be independent of other clubs and should stand and fall through their own endeavours and yes, if necessary, through the largesse of a rich owner
  • WOW ! What a fantastic post, Grapevine 49 !

    I need to read it through at least twice more in order to fully appreciate its content but, boy, have you given this subject some thought !

    There's something in there for everyone to recognise & agree with whilst also making us consider alternative views -and all in just one post !

    If this doesn't gain a record number of "likes", I'll eat my hat ( if I owned one)

  • Grapevine. The best post on CL, probably since your last one.

    Wonderful to read your thoughts, which are always outstandingly good.
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