Holland targets Champions' League

CHARLTON skipper Matt Holland believes he can go one better than he did at Ipswich and lead the Addicks into the Champions' League, writes Derek Davis.

CHARLTON skipper Matt Holland believes he can go one better than he did at Ipswich and lead the Addicks into the Champions' League, writes Derek Davis.

The Blues stunned the Premiership by finishing fifth and qualifying for the UEFA Cup in their first season back in the top flight.

Now Charlton are on course to go one better and Holland says there are strong comparisons between the two clubs.

The Republic of Ireland midfielder, who joined Alan Curbishley's side from Town last season in an £800,000 move, said: "They are very similar clubs in the way they are set up and run. It's a very close-knit bunch here, which was the same at Ipswich.


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"We all get on well and there aren't really any superstars. We have big names such as Scott Parker and Paolo Di Canio, but they pitch-in just like anyone else – nobody gets above their station.

"At Ipswich, right up until the last game of the season we had a chance of finishing third to get into the Champions' League.

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"This year three teams have pulled away but there is no reason why we can't finish in fourth place. There's a long way to go but we can push on after the start we've had."

Charlton maintained fourth place with a 2-0 win over Wolves last Saturday, but Liverpool and Newcastle are in hot pursuit.

While their chief rivals can count on Michael Owen and Alan Shearer for a regular goal supply, Charlton have no obvious top marksman.

Jason Euell is their top-scorer this season with six goals – and he plays in midfield.

But Holland is not concerned and added: "At Ipswich, we had an out-and-out goalscorer in Marcus Stewart who took on the burden of scoring goals. Here the goals are shared throughout the team. We're capable of scoring from different areas."

The former skipper still keeps a keen interest in Town's fortunes and was at Portman Road quite recently to see them play.

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