Lee Bowyer has resigned as Charlton manager after being heavily linked with his former club Birmingham. With speculation over the future of the Birmingham manager, Aitor Karanka, because of their poor form in the Championship, Charlton announced Bowyer had stepped down from his position.
Bowyer left the Valley with the best wishes of Charlton owner Thomas Sandgaard, and said it had been a difficult decision to leave the club where he began both his playing and managerial careers. “Everyone knows how I feel about the club,” Bowyer said in a statement. “I could have gone before but I felt it was the right thing to do to stay and help the club through the tough times we’ve been through.
“We had some amazing times and some tough times. It has been emotional leaving. I’d like to thank all the players that I’ve worked with and the staff for the hours and hours of hard work that they did. I also want to thank the supporters. We wouldn’t have had those great memories without them. The club is now in a place with a good owner that cares and wants to improve the place and I hope the club can continue to grow. It will always hold a special place in my heart.”
In his three years in charge at Charlton, Bowyer has twice guided the club to the League One play-offs, losing to Shrewsbury before earning promotion 12 months later in the final against Sunderland. Though they suffered relegation last season, going down one point shy of safety, Bowyer kept his job and Charlton go into Tuesday’s home match against Bristol Rovers eighth in the League One table, two points off the play-off places.
Bowyer spent two and a half years at Birmingham as a player between 2009 and 2011, initially on loan from West Ham before securing a permanent move. The Midlands club sit fourth from bottom in the Championship, three points above the relegation places, and host promotion-chasing Reading on Wednesday.