Lee Bowyer revealed it was ‘luck’ and a ‘fluke’ that he got in to management.

In little over 14 months, Bowyer has taken his Charlton side to the brink of promotion to the Championship with a play-off final at Wembley against Sunderland in their way.

The manager admitted it could’ve been a different story had he not answered one phone call from a friend.

“I was on holiday when Harry Kewell rang and asked ‘can you help me?’” Bowyer said of his former Leeds team mates request to join him at Watford’s Youth team in Autumn 2015.

“I was only there six weeks.

“In that short time I saw players improve with the information I was passing on.

“They started winning games and I thought ‘this is good.’

“There was a striker there that wasn’t scoring many, then all of a sudden he was scoring.

“And I thought ‘I’m making players better.’

“His mother came to me and said ‘thank you, you’ve made him better, and he’s come alive again.’

“It’s rewarding in a different way, and I thought ‘I like this!’”

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Bowyer’s change in attitude towards coaching surprised the former Newcastle and West Ham man, and he ventured across London back to Charlton to work under Karl Robinson as Assistant Coach.

“I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, for sure,” he continued.

“When I came out of football I can assure you I had no intention of going back in because I just loved playing and training.

“At least when you travelled you had a reward at the end with a game to play.

“Now as a coach there’s no reward, the reward now is a just to watch the players improve as individuals, and win.

“I’ve learnt that winning is everything again.

“When I came out of the game I lost the hunger and took a step back. But coming back in to the game, it’s made me realise I love that winning feeling.

“Now, I’m just not the one kicking or scoring.”

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(Karl Robinson)


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Wembley a perfect reward for Charlton fans says Bowyer

Bowyer took temporary charge when Robinson left at the back end of last season, guiding them to a top six finish but falling short of promotion with defeat to Shrewsbury in the play-off semi-final.

In the time since the manager who was given the role permanently in November admits he’s learned a lot about himself and the game.

“I thought it was short-term before, it was literally just three games, now we’re going to Wembley.

“So a hell of a lot has changed, but nothing has changed with me apart from getting hungrier and hungrier.

“The more we win the more I enjoy it.

“There are lows as well, seeing players get injured, seeing Karlan (Grant) go in January.

“There’s been tough times, like the opening game of the season when we played Sunderland, we had five on the bench and three had never played a game before.

“But the tough times make everything more worthwhile.”

And as for what he’s learned about himself.

“I’m quite a calm person, laid back, and I’ve learnt that if you believe in people, then they give you everything.”


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