Are we seeing too much of Varney?
The Charlton boardroom is not widely known outside of those of us who support the club and that is how we like it, but Chief Executive Peter Varney has recently started to gain some newspaper inches and I was wondering if this was good for the club?
Sure, the blast at the Premier League and UEFA about changing the last day of the season is warranted although he seems to be getting no active support from his peers.
Last week he told the media that "we should be seriously worried in this country about the future of the England team,"
) due to the PFA's decision to reduce payments to fund youth development programmes by £1.5 million to £5 million.
This of course was the precursor to the announcement of the Charlton Athletic United States Soccer Academy (CAUSSA), which is due to open in Arizona during the Summer
. “Our fans have an affinity with players who have been brought through the club’s academy ranks and I think we’d get a good response from them if we were to produce a player from America.”
said old Reg.
Varney also revealed plans to open another academy in China at the same time as questioning the wisdom of allowing so many overseas players to play in the Premiership.
And lest we forget it's election year, so "over in SE7, the health secretary (John Reid) joined Charlton chief executive Peter Varney, (Charlton Athletic Community) trust chief executive Steve Waggott, Eltham MP Clive Efford, Greenwich Council leader Cllr Chris Roberts,"
) and MP for this and MP for that in trying to hit a cord and squeeze a vote out of the couldn't care-less electorate.
So what do we think? Do we have another Doug Ellis or Ken Bates on our hands? No, of course we don't. It comes with the territory of being one of the top 8 clubs in the country, and if no one other than league table watchers realise that then Varney is quick to give the club good publicity on a whole range of issues, from the virtues of youth academies, to our activities in the community, the clubs generosity following the tsunami and to the qualities of maybe the next England manager.
His comments are nearly always well thought-out and his sticks to subjects that he has researched and therefore fully understands. He doesn't open his gob before engaging his brain is what I am trying to say.
It's a tough world amongst those football CEO's and I think Varney is well regarded by the many ego's and fat wallets he has to surround himself with and we should be pleased to have him and not one of the many other football chairmen / chief executives you could now roll off your tongue if you thought about it!