BY LOUIS MENDEZ
Ben Amos is determined to remain Lee Bowyer’s number one choice between the sticks after a frustrating year on the sidelines.
The Charlton stopper featured just once in an EFL Cup game last term – understudy to Championship ever present Dillon Phillips.
But Phillips has been left out this campaign after deciding not to sign a contract extension and could still leave The Valley if an acceptable bid comes from a Championship side.
Amos has started each league and EFL Cup game this season, picking up his second clean sheet so far during the 0-0 draw with Sunderland on Saturday.
Charlton boss Bowyer had thanked Amos for making a string of saves to preserve his side’s point, two weeks after questioning whether the custodian should have kept Doncaster’s Madger Gomes’ long-range effort out in a 3-1 home defeat.
Amos was pleased with his display against the Black Cats, saying: “That’s kind of what I expect of myself. I’m always hard on myself. I’ve not played for a year. It always takes you a couple of games to get into the swing of things. Hopefully I can build up some momentum now. More days like that, more clean sheets.
“When I signed initially, in my head I expected to come and play. Bows went with Dill and Dill did great. I had an operation on my finger, that was three-four months out. That was a season to forget in terms of playing. I’ve always been the same, come in and do my best every day. I want to get playing games now.
“It’s always the same in football. There’s no guarantees. You’ve got to do the business. That’s all I’m concentrating on now. Do my best and don’t worry about all the other background stuff, just do my best.
“I thought [the draw with Sunderland] was probably a fair-ish result in the end. With a man sent off you thought we might go and nick one but we just didn’t really have that little bit of quality to hurt them. A few half-chances but I think we’ll take a point and go again.”
Amos is on his second spell at The Valley, having spent a year on loan in SE7 from Bolton Wanderers during the 2017-18 season.
He’s been well aware of the off-field problems the club have suffered over the last few years, but hopes that Thomas Sandgaard’s arrival will herald a positive new era.
“With the ownership, it’s been lingering for such a long time that’s it’s a relief more than anything that the boys can now concentrate on the football,” added Amos.
“You like to think that things don’t influence boys, whether we’re going to get paid but it can do. Even subconsciously it can have an effect. We’ve been battling with that for all this time that it’s nice now to be able to concentrate on moving forward together.
“The lads have been through so much, this group of boys, that we all just pull our sleeves up and get on with it at this point. We’re hoping for a bit more strength in depth. If we got a plague of injuries, god forbid, we’d be very light. Hopefully in the coming weeks we can add to our squad. I think only take a few and we’ll be looking a threat to the top of the league.
“[Recent new arrivals are] a boost. I don’t know what the numbers are but a lot of players have left the club and we haven’t brought in the same amount.
“It’s a boost when those kinds of players have come in. As Bows has said before, it’s competition for places and a boost for everyone. Hopefully we can get a few more over the line and we’ll be a threat.”
PHOTOS: KYLE ANDREWS/PAUL EDWARDS
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