Monday, 13 June 2011

Would Billy Davies have been a better bet?

Billy Davies has been sacked at Nottingham Forest despite having a year left on his contract and having got to the Championship play offs two seasons running. However, it is not good enough for Forest who consider that they have an historic right to be in the Premiership.

Davies’s sacking came as no surprise after months of rows between him and the Forest board. He was perceived to be irascible. The club were concerned by the time Davies, whose family live in Scotland, was devoting to the job.

Billy Davies was, of course, Charlton's preferred choice to succeed Curbs. He met with Richard Murry and other members of the board and did say afterwards words to the effect that they were 'good people' (which may be another way of saying they were nice guys but lacking in the moolah Davies thinks he has not got at Forest).

As Richard Murray told the story, Davies was booked into the Swallow hotel so that talks could resume the next day. However, rather than enjoying the gratis three star luxury, Davies headed north through the Blackwall Tunnel in the general direction of his native heath and was never seen again. This created an opportunity for rocket scientist Iain Dowie with his DVD to move north from Palace.

I quickly formed the view that Dowie was short of the full complement of rocket fuel, although I have to hold my hands up and say that I welcomed the appointment of Alan Pardew as his replacement. But perhaps Pards inherited a poisoned chalice.

If Billy Davies had decided to come as far south as Charlton (perhaps making use of convenient flights north of the border from London City) how different would our recent history have been? Some would say we were already on a downward curve towards the end of the Curbs era.

However, Davies might have at least kept us as a competitive Championship club which we would certainly take today. It's one of the great 'might have beens' of Charlton's chequered history.


Anonymous said...

Agreed although really the biggest mistake we made was sacking Pardew in response to the mindless idiots who protested after the Sheff Utd loss . Although I'm no fan of Pardew. He is tactically useless , but I'm absolutely certain that if he had stayed we had loads of time left and a pretty good side & he would have been able to motivate them sufficiently and we wouldn't have got relegated to Div 1

Wyn Grant said...

I agree that Pards might well have kept us up, although I also agree with your criticisms of him. His big mistake was when we were in the play off places changing the side around to get us automatic promotion, we then ended up mid-table.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a gernous assessment of Pardew's tenure. After the Sheffield United game in which we were abysmal, tactically clueless and it looked like 11 strangers chucked ona pitch together, Pards had to go. There was no evidence whatsoever that he was heading Charlton in the right direction or good enough to keep us up. Pardew was given an extremely large budget to get us out of the Championship and squandered all our fiannces on the likes of Luke Varney and Andy Gray who both proved to be incompetant. Some failed loan signings, desperate gambits at playing youth team players, a dreadful run of form just left the board no option but to get rid. Maybe what followed wasn't ideal in the eyes of Charlton fans but the decision to sack Pards can hardly be considered the turning point, he is hugely responsible for the rut we still find ourselves in.

Bob Miller said...

Pardew..............? Is that the chap who is persently managing Premiership side Newcastle United?

sillav nitram said...

i don't know how true but i was lead to believe davies didn't rate our squad, or was it more to do with his own ability to manage at premiership level? if he'd taken the job, it would have been his first shot at the big time, so maybe he bottled it?

Sciurus Carolinensis Nemesis said...

Billy Davies always always chunters on about needing to spend more and more money on players.
Whether his selections with Murray's millions would have been less bad than Dowie's we'll never know. I have never liked Davies's public airing of grievances with his bosses - he left Derby over money just after steering them to promotion. His ego would inevitably have become a problem.
Pardew is an inveterate tinkerer, even having assembled his own side he clearly had no clue as to his best 11 and that is a recipe for disaster. The downward curve had undoubtedly gathered momentum while Curbs's doubts about his Charlton future were festering from mid-season onwards.

Wyn Grant said...

You're right, Pards was a tinkerman, funny how quickly you blot these things out. Still better record overall than Dowie though. Don't know about Davies not rating the squad, Richard Murray didn't mention that as far as I recall. I always got the impression that Davies was someone who always wanted more money than realistically could be made available wherever he was.

Anonymous said...

With all the benefits hindsight brings, Charlton and Murray cocked up bigtime Re. Curbs departure and replacement.
However, Billy Davies! At the time i said no thanks and my opinion hasn't changed. He's Billy bigbollox, thinks he's something greater than he really is.

WattO said...

Glad we didn't get the gobby little Scottish upstart.

Wyn Grant said...

So, on the whole, the kilted wonder doesn't come out of this too well and perhaps we had a lucky escape, it's just a shame that the immediately available alternative was a relegation specialist.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps this is a false dichotomy though, couldn't we have gone for someone like Hodgson to replace Curbs?

Wyn Grant said...

Probably is false dichotomy, although it would only be called that at Charlton. One gets the impression that the board were caught on the hop a bit and should have done more contingency planning. Or one could have had Keith Peacock as stand in while a more considered choice was made.

Anonymous said...

Richard Murray may never admit to it, but at least part of the reason that he hired Dowie was to put one over on Simon Jordan. A huge mistake of vanity that cost the club dearly, IMO.
Dowie is, was and always will be an absolute disaster as a manager.
Davies would have been a much better choice at the time. But truthfully, who wouldn't have been.
I have no doubt that Davies would have done much better than Dowie, if handed the same money. Again, that wouldn't be difficult.
Davies would most likely have already worn out his welcome by now had he replaced Curbs. But at the same time, I think the club would be a lot better off than it is now.