Charlton Athletic have been unable to reach an agreement with manager Lee Bowyer regarding the extension of his contract.
Bowyer’s deal expires on June 30 and the club were hopeful they could extend the former Premier League midfielder’s stay after he secured promotion back to the Championship in their play-off win over Sunderland.
However, according to a statement released on Monday, the club’s offer of a one-year extension and a salary three times what he was given in his last pay increase in September was rejected.
The statement read: “The fact the club is for sale has not helped with finding an agreement. The current owner needs to take into account that a new owner may want to appoint his own manager.
“However, this concern did not stop the current owner proposing a contract extension of one year to Lee Bowyer, even though the club may be sold in a few weeks. Under those circumstances, a multi-year extension would not be good business practice.”
Controversial owner Roland Duchatelet had recently admitted his frustration over delays in securing a buyer for the Championship club, blaming high stadium renting costs as one of the reasons as to why he was struggling to find a buyer.
The owner went on to explain the reasoning behind Bowyer’s rejection: “The owner understands Lee’s point of view, because many Championship clubs pay huge amounts (some pay millions of pounds per year) to their manager.
“It is fair that Lee feels he should be paid like many other Championship managers. That the average Championship club makes a loss of around £15 million per year is not something players should care about. The owners are crazy.
“This is why we could not come to an agreement. Another element may have influenced as well. Unlike previous contract discussions, Lee wanted an agent to handle it. We reluctantly accepted. However, involving a player agent in a manager’s contract discussion is not healthy.
“If the agent helps make the manager more money, it may result in the manager to have a more positive attitude towards players proposed by the same agent, a conflict of interest. Obviously, Lee is above such things, but it is nevertheless not a healthy situation.”
The statement concluded saying the club’s primary focus is to sell and that they haven’t started looking for a new manager. A caretaker boss will be announced in the meantime, although if Bowyer has a change of heart before his contract expires then he ‘is still welcome to stay’.