Charlton AthleticSport

Lee Bowyer gives his verdict on League One salary cap being scrapped – and expresses frustration if hampered them in last two transfer windows


Lee Bowyer reckons it is too early to judge how the League One salary cap being scrapped is going to affect Charlton Athletic.

The PFA had challenged the move by the EFL to impose spending controls and an independent arbitration panel ruled in their favour on Tuesday.

Charlton had voted against the cap, which limited League One clubs to expenditure of £2.5million a season.

The PFA are looking to work with the EFL on new cost control measures.

“From what I understand clubs will be allowed to spend what comes into the club,” said Addicks manager Bowyer. “But there is nothing coming in – apart from player sales. We are one of the only teams who has brought any money in, because we have sold a few players.

“If there were fans coming in then we’d be fine, due to the income.

“They fact they put the cap in place and then got rid of it so quickly just says they shouldn’t have done it in the first place. It affected and hurt us. It stopped us being able to bring in players once our embargo was lifted. We had about 10 days at the end of the first window and then the January one. It affected us a lot more than it affected other clubs.

“We wanted to try and close the gap because we had lost 12 players, and were not allowed to close the gap. Now all of a sudden the teams coming down next season are going to benefit from it. We weren’t allowed to do business like that

“Now it has been scrapped after the window closes. It’s crazy. Are you telling me football is in a better place now than in the summer? Not a chance.

“There are clubs who have been building their squads at this level for two or three years, there are ones who were doing that even before we got promoted two years ago. They were just missing out, just missing out – we had to start again from scratch with an obstacle [the cap] in front of us.

“Do I think that’s right? Course I don’t. Other teams [who strengthened before the vote] have a massive advantage over us this season. But people still expect us to get promoted. But if they knew the full details of what we are competing against [in terms of wagebills] then they’d know we shouldn’t even be competing to where we are now.

“We have done exceptionally well to do the business we did and get this squad together – to even try and compete. But people won’t understand that. People think ‘you should go up automatic’ but if I told you what some of those other squads came up to [in terms of spending] then you’d laugh.

“I feel sorry for the owner [Thomas Sandgaard]. He came in thinking ‘here we go’ and the cap was there.”


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One thought on “Lee Bowyer gives his verdict on League One salary cap being scrapped – and expresses frustration if hampered them in last two transfer windows

  • Stephen Morley

    Too true. The expectation level at Charlton by fans has probably been unrealistically high. I have always said that we would start the season slowly and then have a better 2nd half. ( Game of 2 halves !!). The great run of 6 wins without conceding in October, gave us a false hope. The loss of our 2 influential centre backs to injury just showed that Charlton were not that strong after all. This EFL cap was a double whammy to Charlton, along with Sheffield Wednesday getting a reprieve with the points reduction. It seemed that everything was against Charlton. However, that has gone and is in the past. Along comes Thomas Sandgaard and he has given us fans a huge lift and my hopes for the future are very bright. Promotion may not be on the cards this season, but next season must surely herald the rise of Charlton once more. Hopefully, the fans will be back in some way and it has been said many times, there is nothing like a Valley crowd to lift the players even more. This ‘cap’ should never have been put in place and, I for one, am pleased common sense has prevailed and it has been abolished.


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