Charlton Athletic Promotion Hero Fancies Challenge Of New Championship Position

Former Charlton Athletic boss Lee Bowyer has discussed his desire to take over the job at recently relegated Leeds United, speaking to TalkSport.

The 46-year-old was a prominent figure during his time at Elland Road and made over 200 appearances as part of the midfield setup. He signed in 1996 from Charlton Athletic for £2.8 million, a figure which was a record for a British teenager at that time. During his seven-year stay at the club, he was part of an incredible Champions League run that saw them reach the semi-finals and win Player of the Year twice.

Leeds were relegated from the Premier League on the final day as they fell to a 4-1 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur, which saw Sam Allardyce sacked. Since then, the former midfielder has been linked with taking over at the club, and he has revealed he has exchanged messages over the job, claiming he would love the chance to get them going again.

Talking on the White & Jordan show on TalkSport, Bowyer revealed he was in discussions to take over in the final stages of last season before the club decided to go with Sam Allardyce, a choice that can be described as wise with his track record of saving teams from relegation.

Leeds face a challenge as they join a Championship division that features some of English football’s biggest names, including the other two relegated teams, Leicester City and Southampton, and recently promoted Sheffield Wednesday. It is a tough ask, as this looks to be one of the most competitive seasons on paper in recent years for the second tier.

However, Bowyer has Championship experience, despite only two managerial positions; his last came to an end in 2022 as he was sacked by Birmingham City, despite leading them to safety in two successive seasons. However, at a time when the club was looking to change hands, former Watford owner Laurence Bassini had always spoken of his intention to replace Bowyer once a deal was completed for the club.

Bowyer’s first managerial job came at the same club as he began his professional playing career, as he took over Charlton Athletic in 2018. Bowyer looked to be a man who had what it took to get them there, earning them promotion to the Championship in 2019 via the playoffs, and after over 150 games and three years in charge, he would depart to take over at Birmingham City.

“Without going into too much detail, there was a message or two exchanged, but the decision from the club was to go with Big Sam because of experience. 

“Unfortunately for the football club that didn’t work out, but going forward, I’d like to think that we would have a conversation at some stage and maybe try and put something together.”

“Would I have fancied my chances to maybe keep Leeds up? Of course, I would. But that’s the past, you can’t change the past.

“I have a connection with the club, I understand the club and I think that’s important for whoever goes in there next. If I got the call, I’d love to go there and get that club going again, get the fans onside, and get the place back – I’d jump at the chance.

“I believe if I went in there I would get them promoted. I’ve spoken to them in the past, I’ve been to Elland Road many times and had conversations with the owner and we get on really well.”

Writer’s View

Bowyer appears to be a talented manager. However, he may not be the right choice to steer Leeds back to the Premier League; after winning promotion with Charlton, they were immediately relegated once again to League One. While he may have a connection to the club, it would be a risky appointment with his only proven track record in the Championship coming at the opposite end of the table the Whites aim to be at.

 

 

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