BY RICHARD CAWLEY
Karlan Grant completed his multi-million pound move to Huddersfield Town on Wednesday – with Charlton manager Lee Bowyer making it clear that an instant loan back was never an option.
The 21-year-old signed a deal until 2022.
Grant could make his Terriers bow at Chelsea tomorrow. But Bowyer reckons the Premier League outfit’s plight – 11 points from safety and netted just 13 goals – will see the Greenwich-born frontman quickly get top-flight football.
“From what I hear he has been promised he’ll play games,” said the Addicks chief. “They weren’t going to loan him back, that was never a possibility because they are not scoring goals.
“I understand why he wanted to go so badly. It has left us in the lurch a little bit, especially with the timing as we’ve got Lyle Taylor suspended.
“It is definitely going to knock us back. Because we’ve just lost a player who has gone to play in the Premier League, so he’s a very good player. Are we going to be able to replace all his qualities? Probably not. Otherwise the lad we’d be bringing in would be in the Premier League, or going to the Premier League.
“We have to look realistically at the budget we have for a player as well, that limits you. That’s why we’ve taken so long trying to get the best replacement for Karlan we possibly can with the budget we’ve been given.
“Will it [selling Grant] affect us? Only time will tell. But I’m a believer that no team is just one player. We’ve played games without Karlan this season and won them. He’s going to be a big miss but we need to take the closest replacement possible.”
Grant had under six months on his Valley contract. Bowyer says multiple new contract offers were knocked back. He explained: “As soon as he started playing for us this season we offered him a contract, we tried so hard. The deals we were offering were very, very good deals for League One. But obviously rumours started about him maybe getting a move and he was scoring goals.
“He got a bit of attention and once that happened you’ve got people talking to him and making him aware what the possibilities are. We were fighting a losing battle then.
“We offered two or three contracts but they just straight refused them. They said: ‘No, we’re not going to sign. We’re going to wait until the end of the season’. What can you do then? There is nothing you can do then.
“From a selfish point of view, I’m disappointed he has gone now. For me, it would’ve been better if he had stayed and seen out the season, simply because he would have got a lot more games and he would’ve scored more.”
Picture: Thomas Gomersall