Charlton Athletic boss wants fans to forget Crystal Palace connection and give Jonny Williams love

BY RICHARD CAWLEY

Charlton are aiming to sign Jonny Williams in time for him to make his Valley bow tomorrow – with boss Lee Bowyer urging fans to get behind the playmaker. 

Williams, 25, was in the directors’ box for the New Year’s Day win over Walsall. 

The Welsh international was part of Crystal Palace’s playing squad who travelled to Wolverhampton on Wednesday night. 

Sullay Kaikai made a loan switch from the Eagles last season but never won over Charlton fans. 

And Bowyer has asked for total support for Williams. He could make his debut against Sunderland – who he spent the second half of last season on loan at. 

“I get the rivalry regarding the fans and the clubs – but he is hopefully going to be our player,” said Bowyer yesterday morning. 

“He wants to come and play for us. 

“I’d say just to give the kid a chance. I’m sure they’ll love him. He is a very good player. So my message is get behind him, make him feel loved and I’m sure they’ll be happy with what they see. 

“He has experience and is a very good player – I think he’ll bring a lot. We’ve lost Jamie Ward [back to Nottingham Forest] – he is going to be a very good replacement.” 

Injuries have badly disrupted Williams’ progression. He was seen as a future star when coming through the ranks at Palace but has spent too long sidelined. 

“He has trained every day this season and played all the U23 games,” said Bowyer. “He is ready to go. 

“He is training with the Palace first-team every day, working with quality players. I’m excited for this one.” 

Ben Reeves (hamstring) is a doubt for the visit of the Black Cats.

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