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Charlton Athletic midfielder Johnnie Jackson writes for the KM Group

Johnnie Jackson
Johnnie Jackson

One word summed up Saturday for me – frustrating.

It was one of those days against an Oldham Athletic side that stuck rigorously to their game plan.

It wasn’t anything surprising. We knew that they would come down and make things difficult for us and they worked hard and I’m sure they were happy to head back home with a point.

They were having their Christmas party in Southend later that night, so I’m sure it was a good start to the evening for them.

There was added frustration for me because I had to watch all the action unfold in front of me.

I’m more nervous watching on from the stands and although I was delighted to see Darel Russell head his first goal for the club, we couldn’t see out the win.

This is my third injury spell since first arriving at the club a few years ago and it wasn’t great to come out when the team and I were both doing well.

I got used to watching last year and it was tough seeing the side struggle and not being able to do anything about it.

Thankfully, in my absence, the team have kept the scoreboard ticking over but nobody wants to miss out on football.

You expect niggles here and there, though, so I’m just grateful that this is not one like last season when I missed months rather than weeks.

The injury is progressing well and this week I’ve been stepping up my running as well as working hard in the gym.

Dale Stephens is also on the way back, so it’s been good to have someone to work with.

I’m experienced enough now to know my body and having suffered a similar hamstring injury before, I knew what had happened straight away at Brentford in November.

It was a freak fall, really but I’ve been through it before and I’ll know when I can crack on.

The players and I have been out and about over the past week or so and we made our annual Christmas visit to Queen Elizabeth’s Hospital, near The Valley.

It was, as ever, a humbling experience, and put things into perspective for me, particularly as I have a young family. Hopefully, we brought a smile to some sick kids.

We also attended the annual Young Addicks Christmas party last Sunday and some of the lads really got into the spirit of it.

Matt Taylor even had his face painted as a tiger, while Andy Hughes was Shrek, which was a fair effort.

Our reserve keeper John Sullivan let himself down on our fancy dress players’ Christmas party in Liverpool the previous weekend, though.

He just wore a black T-shirt and said he was a jockey. It was a poor effort.

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