Theo Foley RIP
We have lost a proper football man, and a Charlton man at that. The club sadly announced that Theo Foley has passed aged 83 after a period of poor health.
Theo’s time as a Charlton player and then manager in the late 60’s and early 70’s was before I started going but he left an indelible mark on the next decade and a half at The Valley signing Derek Hales, Mike Flanagan and Colin Powell in his period as manager from 1970 to 1974.
After Charlton Foley worked at Millwall then QPR where he partnered up with George Graham. They returned to Millwall, but then they had the greatest success at Arsenal winning the league title at Anfield on that iconic night in 1989.
Theo went on to coach at various clubs including Northampton where he played during the 1960’s in their most successful era. After 45-plus years in the game the Irishman became a regular at The Valley after our return and was a lovable, chatty and welcoming host in the club’s lounges.
Even up until the recent lockdown Theo’s cheeky smile could still be seen at The Valley on match days. Tragically Theo and his wife Sheila lost their son Paul at the age of 44 in April.
My thoughts are with his family and many friends tonight.
Ex-Addick Eamon Dunphy once wrote of Theo: “He was a Dubliner: brash, extrovert, optimistic, intense, thin as a whippet, hard as nails when he played, full of sardonic humour around the dressing room.”
Obituary in the Irish Independent here.
I thought very highly of Theo because he was a great judge of a player and a good manager. I think he also signed the great Arthur Horsfield who was an ever present during his time with us.