Holden: "The mood is excellent"

Dean Holden smiling

Dean Holden is looking to keep the feel-good factor going on Tuesday when the Addicks travel to Newport County in the first round of the Carabao Cup.

Charlton are coming off a 1-0 win against Leyton Orient on Saturday as Holden’s side opened their 2023/24 league campaign with a deserved victory in front of the largest attendance at The Valley in more than a year. 

Speaking ahead of Tuesday’s tie, Holden said: “We’re going to try and win the game. It doesn’t matter what the fixture is, what the competition is, where the game is being played at, we’re trying to build that in the group which is irrespective of what type of game it may or may not be.

“We’ve watched Newport, they’ve had a difficult result up at Accrington at the weekend, 3-0. Having watched the game back they had chances themselves and maybe the scoreline could have looked a bit different. I think Accrington were better than them maybe in both boxes on the day.

"For us it is another tricky game because it is early in the season, there will be lads for us that need minutes, some of our summer recruits in particular. It’s getting the balance right between not making too many changes so it upsets the chemistry but at the same time knowing that we do need to get minutes into certain players.

“We’ll be going there, irrespective of what team we put out, to win the game. I’ve spoken at length about trying to get a winning mentality back into this football club. We’re going there with absolutely the right preparation, absolutely the right mindset.

"I believe we’re taking a decent following again which again on a Tuesday night, the other side of Wales, is not easy. It’s important that we keep this feel-good factor going.”

The Addicks trained on Monday before making the trip to Wales and Holden explained they were in good mood following Saturday’s win.

“The mood is excellent,” he said, “We’ve had a good morning session. The lads that didn’t play on Saturday have done the majority of the work today. It was a really energetic training session, so I’m really pleased with that.

“I was pleased with the three points, of course, on Saturday in our first game. I think the first game of the season can sometimes throw up different results. Not many people maybe would have given Wigan a chance going to Derby given the problems they’ve had throughout the summer. For us Leyton Orient were always going to be a difficult opponent based on a local derby for the first game of the season with them bringing a fantastic away following as well, I think they’d only lost six or seven games last season in a promotion-winning campaign, so for us it was a tricky fixture. I was really pleased with the mentality.”

Holden’s side limited Leyton Orient to an xG of 0.20, (according to Flashscore) while Charlton tallied an xG of 1.33 and the Manager said he was pleased with his team's performance: “I thought we attacked at times with real pace and real energy, we defended behind the ball much better than we did in the previous game against Aberdeen and got back to what we’ve been doing well in pre-season, so that was important on the back of a really good training week last week.

"I was pleased with the energy we showed and just the aggressiveness at times that we showed to go and hunt the ball down and force the opposition into mistakes. We could have won by more goals if we were being a bit picky but at the same time a clean sheet was important and in the first game to get three points gets us off to a nice start.”

Due to EFL rules, the club aren't allowed to stream Tuesday's Carabao Cup game. Click here to purchase your pass to listen to live audio commentary

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