First and foremost we believe he will be the first Craig ever to play for Charlton and our first Scottish goalkeeper since Charlie Wright.
The twenty eight year old has joined on a two year contract from Portsmouth following the expiry of his contract down there. He began his career as a teenager at Harrogate Town before playing briefly for Walsall and Shrewsbury. He was first choice goalkeeper at Fratton Park for the last three seasons and made 112 appearances and was voted player of the year last season. He played in all four of the encounters with Charlton in 2018/19 and 2020/21 but didn't manage a clean sheet against us.
He is pleased to be joining CAFC:
“I’m over the moon,” he said. “It feels like a while that this has been going on for now, but I’m glad it’s over the line and I can’t wait to get cracking.
As soon as I heard Charlton were interested, literally at the end of last season… There were other opportunities that arose, but I knew I wanted to come to this football club. You just have to look at the size of it, the history and that ticked all the boxes for me."
Steve Gallen explained some of the background to the signing. He said he shared an exchange with his brother, Joe, who was mightily impressed by MacGillivray’s ability during his four-year spell as assistant manager at Fratton Park.
“I can speak to Joe a bit more now about it because, in a way, we were rivals before and we wouldn’t really speak too much about transfers and players,” acknowledged Charlton’s Director of Football. “But Joe’s gone with Kenny Jackett to Leyton Orient and so now maybe not as big a rivals, so of course I’ve been speaking to Joe about Craig, and he’s spoken very, very highly of him. I also spoke to Kenny, and he also spoke very highly of him."
“I think consistency is the main thing I’m thinking about with Craig. Also you’re thinking really about that position so someone who’s a consistent performer. Everyone I’ve spoken to has said that about him, and obviously we’ve been playing Portsmouth in the last couple of years and he’s always done well against us. I think in particular he makes big saves, we’ve all seen that. But just generally, consistent, mature, good goalkeeper so pleased to get it done.”
Gallen also spoke of the domino effect that can occur as a result of incoming transfers, admitting he anticipates plenty more to come where that is concerned.
“We need a few more as you know. Don’t worry, I know about it and I’m working on that every day. So I expect players to be coming in, I won’t put any timeline on it just yet, because I don’t want people to be disappointed, but it’s all in motion.”
“It has been a challenge. A lot of people talk about, in the Championship in particular it’s been a bit slow so all the representatives of players I’m talking to are saying Championship clubs are not moving, and in some ways if they’re not moving it filters down to us. So I’m pleased to get two important bits of business done before the start of pre-season - obviously we’re back in this morning training."
“There’s going to be some more happening now, and I thought this even a week or so ago. Once you get one or two then one or two more will start happening so it’s been a little bit frustrating of course, I’m sure also for the fans, but we’ll get it moving now.”