Charlton Athletic in ‘last-chance saloon’ to make League One campaign a success after latest managerial upheaval

Charlton Athletic have appointed Ben Garner as their new head coach – the ninth different man to sit in the hotseat in just over six years.

The Addicks have agreed a compensation package with Garner’s former employers Swindon Town. The 42-year-old, who led Swindon to the League Two play-off semi-finals in his only campaign in charge, has signed a three-year contract at the Valley.

Charlton had been without a manager for more than a month following the departure of club legend Johnnie Jackson in early May.

“It feels fantastic to be here,” Garner told Charlton’s website. “I’m really pleased and can’t wait to get going. Charlton is a massive football club. Both in terms of history and tradition and just as importantly in terms of potential and scope looking forwards.

Bristol Rovers: Manager Ben Garner sacked by League One club - BBC Sport

“Attacking football is what I believe in, that is how I think football should be played and I will be looking to implement that from day one, both home and away. There is no differentiation in terms of how we prepare, how we will play, we will be consistent and we want to attack.

“We want to have the ball as much as possible, creating chances, scoring goals and being on the front foot, playing with lots of energy without the ball. I want the team to be positive and confident, I want the fans to enjoy coming to watch us play.”


Garner will be hoping to now put down roots with the Addicks – something that has not always been possible over the last few years. Lee Bowyer’s three-year spell in charge from March 2018 to March 2021 is by far the longest anyone has stayed in the dugout in recent times.


Lee Bowyer’s three-year spell in charge of Charlton has been the exception rather than the rule in recent years

Will Garner lead Charlton back to the Championship? Let us know in the comments

Jackson, who has since moved to become manager of League Two side AFC Wimbledon, was in permanent control only since last December. Prior to that Nigel Adkins lasted just seven months, after being axed in October 2021.


Karl Robinson spent 16 months in the hotseat, prior to Bowyer, with Kevin Nugent standing in as brief caretaker prior to him. Russell Slade and Jose Riga both lasted just five months across the calendar year of 2016.

Nigel Adkins is one of many managers to have lasted less than a year in the Charlton job
Karel Fraeye lasted barely three months, from October 2015 to January 2016, winning just two of his 14 games in charge.


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The challenge now for Garner is to end the constant chopping and changing and ultimately deliver promotion back to the Championship. The 2022-23 campaign will be Charlton’s third in League One, with last term seeing them under-perform as they finished 13th – 24 points shy of the play-off places.


Charlton owner Thomas Sandgaard said: “We are obviously striving for a much better season. We will have the best chance of success by creating more chances and scoring more goals than we did last season. Ben’s track record for playing attacking football matches that.”

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