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Bowyer’s August call for Charlton makes any concern over Rangers deal a thing of the past – opinion

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There is no questioning the immense achievement of Charlton Athletic to win promotion from League One last season.

Under Lee Bowyer’s guidance, a threadbare squad were organised in a way in which they were able to play exciting, flowing football, thoroughly entertaining a crowd who had grown weary with their club in recent years.

At the heart of much of that success was midfielder Joe Aribo. The man brought in from Staines Town in 2015 was predominantly the beating heart of the Addicks side, running the show in midfield and contributing ten goals and five assists, including one in the play-offs.

So, there will have been a bit of concern when it became apparent in the summer that the 23-year-old wanted out with his contract set to expire, with Rangers eventually tempting him north of the border on a free transfer.

A big hole was now exposed in the Addicks side and one that needed to be filled.

However, with three games played in the Championship season, Bowyer seems to have managed to do just that.

Signed on a season-long loan from Chelsea, Conor Gallagher arrived to bolster the midfield at the Valley. It will have been a big ask for the 19-year-old to make such a big step and fill-in for the departed Aribo, but that is what he has done.

His debut occured 64 minutes into the opening-day clash with Blackburn Rovers and, although he did not directly contribute to the impressive win, Bowyer clearly saw something.

So he was given a start against Stoke, a side that should have posed a much bigger test than Rovers, but Gallagher was not intimidated, scoring the third goal in a 3-1 win.

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Another goal followed on Saturday against Barnsley and he also provided his first assist as well, making the pain of Aribo’s departure fade significantly – for the time being anyway.

A closer look at the statistics also show just how good a job he has done in the Addicks’ midfield.

Pass accuracy of 74.2% and a long-pass accuracy 66.7% portrays his ability to keep things ticking over and also spark attacks of his own, whilst three shots on target already shows his willingness to shoot when called upon.

However, he does not leave his defence exposed either.

In three matches he has already made 14 interceptions and has not shyed away from a physical battle with any opposition players, who possses far more experience than he does.

There is still a long way to go in the Championship this season, and his form may well fade. But for the time being, Gallagher certainly looks like an inspired signing and one that has made Aribo’s move to Rangers almost unnoticeable.


ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Bowyer’s August call for Charlton makes any concern over Rangers deal a thing of the past – opinion

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