Squeeze hero Glenn Tilbrook releases brand new solo album Happy Ending in February, so we thought it an opportune moment to collar him for a quick natter about his beloved Charlton Athletic, just one point off the Championship relegation zone after four games without a win…
In the song “Bongo Bill” from your new album, the lyrics mention going to watch a team lose 5-0, playing with no passion or skill. Was this based on a real match?
(Laughs) The opening game of I think the 1998-99 season, when Charlton played at home and whooped Southampton 5-0. We played with a lot of passion and a lot of skill in those days, so I can’t say it’s about Charlton!
What are your thoughts on what’s going on at the moment? Do you blame the manager?
No, not at all. I think Chris Powell’s the right man for the job, but they don’t want to spend any money. You can only get so far with what you’ve got, and no further – that’s just the reality of where we’re at.
Just how big a victory was it to get the Valley protected?
Absolutely massive, it means so much. I guess everyone can move somewhere, but the Valley feels special because we’ve been there for so long. One of the attractions of the house I live in now is that it overlooks the Valley (laughs).
Do you go regularly?
I’m a season ticket holder but I’ve been so busy that I haven’t been able to go this entire season. Once this year’s out the way I can start going again.
Do you remember the first match you ever went to?
Yeah, it was Charlton v Stoke in 1996. Honestly I had no interest in football as a kid or as an adult but I took my sons to see the local team, so in many ways I’m a Johnny-come-lately.
By about the third game I went to, I totally got it and fell in love with football. It’s been a real passion of mine ever since.
How about the best and worst games you’ve ever been to?
I think we beat Arsenal 4-2 at Highbury to go top of the league – that was a pretty special game.
As for worst game, when we were in free fall after Curbishley left and Dowie came in – he really messed the team up, bought some absolute mingers and then couldn’t motivate them – that was a really dispiriting game.
Glenn Tilbrook, thank you.
Happy Ending will be released February 10th on Quixotic Records. For more information, please visit the official Glenn Tilbrook website.