“Charlton Athletic is a real family-orientated club. I started coming to Charlton in the early 90s. I came as a fan and then later on I met my wife.
“What I found is it’s just a part of you and it’s part of your life, your weekend and your soul in a way. Then, when my son’s came along, I was bringing the next generation of Charlton fans here.”
For Paul Slater, nothing compares to The Valley erupting in unison together.
As part of the club’s 'Nothing Compares' season-ticket campaign, supporters who purchase a season ticket before the early-bird deadline on Tuesday, June 1st will be welcomed back to The Valley with five added benefits, including a 15% discount in the club shop to use on merchandise.
An ardent collector, Paul has now amassed almost 5,000 football shirts having been collecting shirts for the best part of 40 years, including an abundance of the Addicks’ most historical jerseys.
“The very first Charlton shirt I bought was the Clive Mendonca one - the actual 1998 Wembley one. I basically started my backfill of Charlton shirts from then. The one that has the most memory for me in some respects is the grey Woolwich one - the Admiral one - from the season we were away at Crystal Palace.
“The Charlton badge on any Charlton shirt means history. If people see a shirt, the badge, the sponsor, it almost puts them in a time capsule back to where they were. Any fan can have any shirt, and any shirt to them is a memory. Whether it’s this season’s shirt, the 1998 play-off shirt or it’s one of the Woolwich sponsored shirts from the 1980s, each shirt means something to each fan.”
Paul is now eager to discover next season’s Charlton shirt: “For me, between the end of one season and the start of another, the thing I’m always looking forward to is what kits are going to be there, what designs, the home, away, the third.
“I’m going to buy a kit regardless, for me, my kids and other people. To find out what that is is fantastic. I’ll be going there with my season ticket, using that discount and buying it there in the shop.”
Nothing compares to The Valley’s community feel, and Paul can’t wait to get back supporting the Addicks under the custody of Thomas Sandgaard: “Thomas has a very warm, genuine character and I think a lot of fans see him as part of their family, and that’s a really positive, instilling value. I have such positive hopes and aspirations for what he is going to do here.”
More than 6,000 season tickets have been sold in just over a week. Get your 2021/22 season ticket here.