Nathan Jones has admitted that he had “tentative” negotiations regarding the Charlton Athletic manager position back in September, but that the timing was not perfect for a SE7 return.
Over the weekend, the Addicks selected the 50-year-old Welshman as their new manager.
It is the Valley’s second coaching change this season, following the dismissal of Dean Holden in August and the appointment of Michael Appleton the following month.
Jones also made the final two in Millwall’s quest for Gary Rowett’s successor, but the South London club chose Joe Edwards.
“I had a tentative conversation back in September, but it wasn’t the right time in everything,” Jones told Charlton’s official website. “I needed to take a break following my time at Southampton. I spent time with family and engaged in activities I hadn’t done in years.When I felt ready to return, about six to eight weeks ago, I began to consider offers. I had several possibilities to return – Championship clubs, a chance to play abroad, and other League One clubs – but Charlton holds a special place in my heart.
“I know this is a good club. I understand the current situation, but here is a place and a team with great potential.
“I met with the proprietors, and it was a lengthy process because I needed to ensure that they were in it for the long haul and wanted to do good. Charlton aims to reach new heights, which aligns with my project goals.My daughter is three and a half, and for two and a half years of her life, I wouldn’t say I’ve been absent, but I haven’t been.
I should have been the father she deserved by staying at home and spending time with her. “That (his break from the game) has been absolutely priceless, and no amount of money or anything else can take that away now.”
Jones holds the title of manager; his replacement, Appleton, was head coach, as was Dean Holder.
When asked about it, he remarked, “It’s not simply my doing. Charlton informed me when I first met everyone here – Andy (Scott), Jim (Rodwell), and the owners – that they have certain goals for the club, how they want it to progress, what changes they want to make, and how it would be driven. That is the duty of a manager, which is what drew me in.
“Now, I don’t mind being a head coach, but if certain aspects of recruitment, the climate, and a variety of other areas require driving, that is the duty of a manager. That is why I am a manager; I have slightly more responsibilities than a traditional head coach.”