Charlton Athletic Season Review – Johnnie Jackson departs after the Addicks’ underwhelming campaign


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Charlton’s 4-0 loss away to Ipswich Town on the final day of the Sky Bet League One season pretty much summed up their season; disappointing.

The Addicks finished 13th on 59 points in the table with just 17 wins from a possible 46 games. While finishing 24 points off the play-offs may appear to be a failure compared to their position last season, it will come as a relief to fans after their dreadful start to the season.

They were teasing with the prospect of relegation before the club took the decision to sack Nigel Adkins and replace him with Johnnie Jackson, who soon turned their fortunes around and helped them climb back up the table.

However Charlton will now be looking for their next permanent managerial appointment after Jackson’s recent departure, as the Addicks look to start again with a clean slate.

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Key fixtures

Charlton 1-4 Bolton – 28/9/21

A 4-1 loss at home to the promotion hopefuls showed the quality between the two sides. Charlton did actually take the lead through a Josh Davison finish, only for the Trotters to equalise before the break through Oladapo Afolayan. Kieran Lee then scored a brace in the final 20 minutes to edge Bolton closer to victory, with Antoni Sarcevic making it four in added time. The result saw Charlton lie 23rd in the table, with just six points from a possible 30.

Sunderland 0-1 Charlton – 23/10/21

Two days after they lost to Accrington Stanley, the Addicks parted ways with Adkins and brought in Jackson. A daunting trip to high-flying Sunderland would await the interim manager, but his side were soon able to pull off a shock result. Jayden Stockley’s header was enough to separate the two sides in the north-east and earn Charlton their third league win of the season.

Rotherham 0-1 Charlton – 9/4/22

Once again the Addicks were able to turn up to a promotion-chasing side and secure victory, this time away at a Rotherham outfit who eventually finished in the automatic spots. George Dobson scored the only goal of the game that sealed their place in League One for next season, although relegation was never really on the cards as the campaign approached its completion.

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Key players

Jayden Stockley

While Charlton overall were unable to match their seventh placed finish from last season, Stockley certainly had a campaign that he could be proud of. He scored 20 goals across all competitions for the Addicks, finishing as their top scorer for the season ahead of Conor Washington on 11.

His start to the campaign was quiet in terms of goals, but the form he showed in the latter stages of the year was mightily impressive. Stockley netted five times in their last eight games, scoring three on the trot against Doncaster Rovers, Lincoln City and AFC Wimbledon.

He was also absent from the side from mid-December as a result of two slipped discs in his back and only returned to first team action at the end of February. The 28-year-old may well have scored more had it not been for his injury, but such a total come the end of the campaign proves his move from Preston in the summer has been worthwhile.

Craig MacGillivray

Goalkeeper Craig MacGillivray made the move to Charlton from Portsmouth last summer, having spent three seasons on the south coast. Although the Addicks’ league position could raise questions over his capabilities, the statistics prove otherwise.

MacGillivray kept a total of 16 clean sheets in 43 games in League One. That equates to just over one in three games, and such a number has him third in the table for the division overall. Only Plymouth Argyle’s Michael Cooper and Wycombe Wanderers’ David Stockdale have better records, with both keeping 18 clean sheets.

A total of 16 clean sheets is also equal to the likes of Ben Amos, who is set to play Championship football with Wigan Athletic next season as a result of their title winning campaign in 21/22. However MacGillivray achieved such a feat in three fewer games, thus proving why he should remain in between the sticks for Charlton.

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What next?

It was announced on Tuesday that Jackson will leave the club as manager just over half a year after he took the position at the club he spent around eight years at as a player. Thomas Sandgaard, who became the club’s new owner in September 2020, said to the Charlton website:

“I would like to thank Johnnie for everything he has done for the club. He is a Charlton legend who has given his all for this club as a player, captain, coach, assistant manager and manager.

“I am grateful for all he has contributed during my time at Charlton, including stabilising us this season when he took over as manager, following our poor start to the campaign.

“This decision has been a very difficult one to make, Johnnie has done so much for the club, but I felt the time was right to make the change as we continue our preparations for next season.

“Our search for a new manager has begun. This season wasn’t the season any of us at the club wanted. I have big ambitions for Charlton and it will be important for us to find the right individual that can build on the foundations in place and help us progress on our journey.”

Despite the Addicks announcing such a decision only two days ago, there has already been a host of names of those who could be the club’s next permanent appointment.

According to talkSPORT, SkyBet have Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink as the leading favourite for the job at 5/2. The former striker, who currently manages fellow League One outfit Burton Albion, played for the likes of Chelsea, Atletico Madrid and Leeds United throughout his career, as well as spending a season at Charlton. However, Richard Crawley of South London Press says that Hasselbaink is not in the running for the vacant post at The Valley.

Mark Warburton, who is set to leave Championship side QPR at the end of the season, is next in the list at 7/2. His contract at the West London side is set to expire soon and he has therefore been linked with a move across town to the Addicks.

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Former Charlton manager Lee Bowyer is also a speculated name at 4/1 having previously spent just under three years at the helm, in which he guided them to the Championship after their dramatic play-off final win against Sunderland in 2019.

Also on the list are the likes of Darren Ferguson (6/1), Mark Bonner (14/1) and Sean Dyche (20/1), with the former and the latter both leaving Peterborough United and Burnley respectively this season; Bonner is still in charge at Cambridge United after a superb first season back in League One.

Charlton are now set for a huge summer. Fans will be eager to hear of their new manager soon in order to fully prepare for next season, which must be a huge improvement on the one that has just finished. The Addicks were close to the play-offs in the 20/21 campaign and were hopeful of such a finish once again, but they ended up seven spots below the top six.

A club that once competed in the Premier League will be hoping to return to the top flight at some stage but they will first have to overcome League One, a division that proved to be difficult to compete in at many stages over the past few months.

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