Well, the short answer is that we don't know. And the long answer is that most people who pretend that they do know, probably don't either. There is a lot of speculation going on.
But we do know that four new appointments were made this week. Here is a topline summary while we seek further information.
Dean Holden has been appointed as manager on a contract until the end of the season and he will be in charge for the Peterborough game on Boxing Day. After a career spent mostly in the lower leagues he has management experience at Bristol City (August 2020- February 2021) and at Stoke where he was assistant to Michael O'Neill. He gave his first interview to Charlton TV on Tuesday - an interview in which he mentioned CAST's Addicks Charter and acknowledged the importance of unity with fans:
Andy Scott has been appointed as Technical Director on a contract until the end of January. According to Thomas Sandgaard: "He’ll play a key role in the January transfer window and longer term will help further align the direction of our men’s first team and academy." He had spells as manager at Brentford, Rotherham and Aldershot but has since made it clear that he prefers a backroom role. In recent years he has been central to scouting and recruitment at Watford, Swansea and Forest. At Forest he oversaw significant spending in the summer window of £150M after their promotion to the Premier League before parting company in October. Our understanding is that Steve Gallen will work alongside him. Here is his first interview in which he explains the shortness of his contract and observes that he doubts that he would have been brought in if there were no funds available to strengthen the squad.
Rodwell comes in as interim Chief Operating Officer. He is a former professional footballer who had a long non-league career - most notably with Rushden & Diamonds - and who in 2002 came third on ITV's Britain's Brainiest Footballer quiz. His most recent post was as interim CEO of Hull City and he has been CEO at a number of different clubs, including Sunderland.
Warrick replaces Emma Parker who gave in her notice as Finance Director last month. This would not be particularly notable but for the fact that he set up a company this week called SE7 Partners with Charlie Methven. Warrick is not an accountant by background and is Managing Partner at Applegarth Partners who specialise in real estate investment and asset management. He is a big fan of our next opponents, Peterborough United.
Methven will be familiar to many Charlton fans through his appearances in the Netflix series "Sunderland 'til I die" when he was part-owner at The Stadium of Light. Let’s hope he doesn’t bear too big a grudge about Bauer in the 94th ruining his happy ending. He is a PR man by trade and claims credit for the recent managerial appointments at The Valley - telling The South London Press that Thomas Sandgaard asked him for advice: "I don’t think that was especially revolutionary advice, but he took it and I recommended a few candidates I had come across during my time in football."
When asked, Methven described SE7 Partners as the vehicle through which he and Warrick would invest in CAFC in the future if they felt it was a viable proposition.
What can we surmise from this sudden influx of senior staff ? One theory might be that Thomas Sandgaard has at last realised that he needs to bring in more experience and expertise if he is to find success at Charlton. Given his legendary intractability this does not seem very probable. Perhaps more likely is that the appointments could be the precursor of a sale of the club and that they have been made at the behest of a third party.
The Evening Standard ran two articles by Malik Ouzia on Wednesday titled "Charlton fans fear changes spell danger" and "Sandgaard has built an unhappy Valley after arriving as the saviour". CAST spoke to Ouzia:
"We seek further transparency about the investment and infrastructure behind the scenes" CAST told Standard Sport. "We note the recent registering of a new company SE7 Partners, but there has been no official comment regarding this. Charlton have been in total disarray in recent times under the ownership of ESI in various guises. We said never again for us or any club at that point. Above all we need transparency regarding who is running and financially investing in our football club"
Links to the articles are here - you may need to register to read them:
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