BY LOUIS MENDEZ
It will be eerily quiet at The Valley as Charlton and Millwall face off in the South London derby behind-closed-doors this evening – but Addicks stopper Dillon Phillips reckons the chance to take a step closer to Championship survival will be enough to fire his side up.
Lee Bowyer’s side would normally be able to rely on a vocal home support to help lift their performance but despite fans being forced to stay away under the Covid-19 regulations, Phillips says the Addicks will not be short of an incentive to go for the win this evening.
“The thought of being relegated out of the division is enough to get anyone motivated,” said the 25-year-old goalkeeper.
“As much as we’d love everyone to be there, we won’t need anyone there to get us up for the game. We know what it means to the club and the fans. Putting that aside, it’s just another game where we need three points to stay in the division. That’s all we’re bothered about.”
The Charlton academy graduate is unbeaten in over five hours of Championship football now, keeping three consecutive clean sheets since the return from the coronavirus break.
“We want another six [clean sheets] if we can,” he added.
“We’re not saying it’s going to happen and it might not. The time it doesn’t, we’re going to need to score two. Let’s just take it game by game. Friday will be here before we know it. If we can keep another clean sheet and score one or two at the other end, then happy days.
“Three clean sheets in a row is hard to come by in this division. Wigan have done seven in a row. If we can follow them, then we’ll be laughing.
“To be fair to the lads, we’ve played three games and I’ve made two or three saves, max. We prefer it like that, that’s what we’re setting out to do. Limit the other team to as little as possible.
“I think as a team we’ve just gone back to basics and shown what we’re good at. Not tried to do too much. We started the league well. Hopefully if we can keep that form from the start of the division, going over the next six games then we’ll be safe. At the end of the day, that is the aim and our goal. Once that’s done we can relax, but until then it’s going to be non-stop. The games will be so thick and fast but I’m enjoying it. It helps when you’re picking up results.”
PHOTOS: PAUL EDWARDS
Please support your local paper by making a donation
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing recently: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.