This is Katrien Meire on Talksport two weeks ago:
"I cannot stress enough we turned a corner... And that is why we appointed Russell Slade."
Since that statement Slade's team put in a smart performance to beat the current league leaders Scunthorpe 3-1 in the FA Cup followed by a dismal performance at Swindon - albeit with a team weakened by international call-ups.
Now the club are explaining Slade's sacking as follows:
"The club wants to give itself the best possible opportunity of achieving its number one priority - winning promotion to the Sky Bet Championship at the earliest opportunity."
So what is the big difference in the last fortnight? What has made the powers-that-be suddenly think they have turned the wrong corner? What has happened to make them decide that all those things they said about Slade being the right man no longer apply and that he is in fact the wrong man? In September & October the team went seven games without a win. Since the Rochdale defeat they had won three and drawn two before the Swindon game. And yet, this is the moment they decide that Slade is not the right man?
It couldn't possibly just be another ill-informed knee jerk decision, could it? It can't be, because they have learned from mistakes like that, haven't they?
And surely there can't be any grounds to believe that it might just be an act of pique from an irritated old man annoyed that his birthday celebrations were interrupted. Because, if it was, his CEO would feel so humiliated and undermined that she would without doubt hand in her resignation to salvage some self respect, wouldn't she?
Roland and Katrien have presided over seven changes of manager in under three years! As Oscar Wilde almost said: "to lose one manager may be regarded as misfortune. To lose seven looks like carelessness". How careless do you have to be before you start thinking that you might not really be the right person to do what you are doing?
Russell Slade leaves Charlton with a League points per game record of 1.25 which puts him on a par with Guy Luzon. A long way behind Chris Powell (1.50) and Alan Curbishley (1.42) but better at least than Iain Dowie (1.00) and Karel Fraeye (0.66). He didn't manage to win the support of many Charlton supporters. His tactics were seen as too cautious and negative and he seemed far too precious and sensitive to criticism from fans.
Nevertheless, as supporters, we thank him and wish him well. We know a number of Leyton Orient fans who would love to have him back at the helm of their club. We believe he took on a poisoned chalice when he accepted the Charlton job and we are sure he must have known that too. Who will be next and will he (or she ?) still be at the club at Christmas?