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Planning, or the lack thereof

If you word searched this Blog over the last decade of posts the words ‘plan, or the lack thereof’ would feature heavily when it comes to Charlton Athletic.

Any form of a plan was taken out of the Charlton dictionary around about 2013.

Thomas Sandgaard has done many good things under his stewardship, but starting with that initial 5-year plan, I’ve been less than convinced by his progressive thinking. Yes, plenty of ambition and aspirations, nothing wrong with that, but I’m uncertain to the architecture and anatomy of such lofty objectives.

Jacko’s performance based contract shows a lack of understanding of what it takes to support and empower leaders. Basically Thomas is backing the players over the manager, even though I’d say Jackson had little or no say in their arrival.

The current situation that Jackson finds himself in limits entirely his vision beyond the next game. He says as much when he’s interviewed.

That’s not a vision, it is shortsightedness. The season is over for all of us to see, so let’s get ahead of the pack and plan for next season. We are not publicly traded so no need for blinkered quarter to quarter policy. Look beyond the curve, communicate and you will get buy-in.

The performance related contract based on finishing position was obviously a sticking point for Jacko, explaining the period of time the negotiations took. It further tells me that he wasn’t Thomas’ ideal choice, although what experienced manager would have signed up to such short-termism I don’t know.

There is a presumption that Thomas did have another option, but was drawn into appointing Jackson due to his caretaker success and the burgeoning clamour of the fanbase. Plus, importantly Jackson really, really wanted the job, and deserved it.

Apparently those caretaker matches now count for nothing, although extrapolating results to date over a season would have us in the top six. Let’s be clear, failure to reach the play-off’s lays at the feet of two men, and one of them is not Johnnie Jackson.

I personally feel Jackson justifies the chance to be part of a re-build, be involved in contract discussions, design a pre-season, and take a run at a promotion challenge next season. This plan should start now.

Or alternatively Thomas, get rid of Jackson and bring a new personality in to build for the future. But a future with a roadmap to give a new manager the tools and an endorsement to lead our destiny.

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. PeterandPookie Hearn #

    Right on the button. But it must be that if I were Thomas Sandgaard I would at once give Jacko a two year contract, yes TODAY. Hes got ample support around the club plus if so desired could call on Curbs and Chris Powell over a coffe. Its all there for us – come on Thomas do it!

    February 16, 2022
  2. Jon #

    These were my feelings exactly, when I first heard some of the terms of the contract. It wasn’t a ringing endorsement from Sandgaard, and it’s not how I believe you build a successful team. Barring a few teams(such as the Chelsea’s of the world), the clubs who achieve any level of consistent success are based upon a foundation of stability. It seems to be the fashion to sack the manager after a few bad results, rather than Chairmen holding their nerve, and backing their appointments. I think the situation at Sunderland is a case in point. Sacking Lee Johnson whilst still challenging for automatic promotion, kind of makes me hope they miss out entirely!

    February 16, 2022
  3. There’s a lot of talk at the moment about planning for next season starting now, from a variety of legends and blogs.

    It’s as if the club don’t know this or that wheels aren’t in motion, we do make a lot of assumptions and judgements without knowing what’s really going on behind the scenes.

    Few things are straight forward in life including all things football and Charlton.

    February 16, 2022
    • Alan Bamber #

      We have to make these assumptions as there is no information coming out from the club. I personally think that Sangaard should have just told JJ that he would be caretaker Manager until the end of the season so at least he would know that his immediate future was safe and him and the players would still need to give everything if JJ was to land the job on a permanent basis. JJ done an amazing job when Adkins left but what was going to happen when we had a run of bad results? How was he going to lift the team out of a rut? Well we didn’t have to wait long to find out!
      I’d love to see JJ get a longer contract and see Charlton do well (obviously) and once we have a few more wins to ensure safety then we should absolutely be planning for next season with targets and departures identified and some of these youngsters which I hear so much about given the opportunity to get some senior experience – maybe at the expense of the players who might be heading out the door (Kanu for Burstow for example).
      I am sure that Thomas is not reading our comments and thinking to himself what great ideas we are coming up with and I’m certain that the wheels are already in motion but we all like to have our say and share our opinions so that we can say “I told you so” when proved right or just go very quiet when proven wrong – that’s the beauty of football!

      February 17, 2022
  4. Charlton Lane Dave #

    Completely agree. Given the huge fall in the Zynex stock price since it was floated two years ago and the ongoing over-selling rumpus, I suspect Thomas doesn’t have millions of free cash to throw about and that would discourage another change of manager, certainly in the short-term. We just have to hope it doesn’t leave the rebuilt squad short once again. This is a critical season for us. If we aren’t competing at the right end of the table, then I think gates will step down once more with all the attendant commercial damage and we will find it increasingly difficult to fund a promotion campaign.

    February 16, 2022
  5. Doug Morrison #

    At the back of my mind lies a memory that without Thomas Sandgaard there would be no Charlton. Agree in principle with your managerial speculation. As a past leader of men in business and in sport, Thomas a corporate success has also been learning the football trade the hard way. In a marketing operation, following well directed company trading, targets would be set with regular reviews. My guys didn’t need to be told that failure to achieve targets would bring reviews to see how and if the company had been lacking in it’s support OR was it just judgement In employing someone in the first place was poor.

    Jackson was placed between a rock and a hard place, a situation created by his absolute craving for the chance to manage a Club whose blood runs through his veins.

    Nobody could have foreseen the high casualty rate amongst key players; particularly strikers.

    That he hadn’t yet got his best possible defence yet is clear from the number of fouls, yellow and red cards acquired by inadequate players who’s only option is to illegally stop the opposition.

    I suggest to Thomas: Scrub the old contract. Issue a new one for two or three years to Jacko.
    He needs security of tenure and thought; as does any player.

    We’ve seen enough to guess this year’s Playoffs are now unlikely.

    But given that the manager/coach and his immediate aides, the owner and players old and new, support him to hell and back, 22-23 could be a good year.

    I’ve followed the Addicks for 67 years. I’m not Jewish but as they say: “Next year in Jerusalem.” Unlike The Jewish people, we need it to make it happen.

    (I used to write regularly as Dr Kish’s “Favourite Glaswegian.”)

    February 16, 2022

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