BY RICHARD CAWLEY
Lyle Taylor is set to be offered a new contract by Charlton Athletic – with boss Lee Bowyer expecting bids for his star striker.
The 29-year-old forward scored 25 goals and got 12 assists for the Addicks. He has 12 months to run on his terms in SE7.
Charlton owner Roland Duchatelet sold Karlan Grant in the January transfer window to Huddersfield Town.
Bowyer is convinced that Taylor, voted the club’s Player of the Year by supporters, will attract interest.
“Yeah, I think that clubs will come in for him,” said the Charlton manager. “But the good thing on our side is that he loves it here. He is in London and playing in the Championship. They are three things that are a positive for us.
“We’re definitely going to be offering Lyle a new deal. It is one of those situations where it is going to be Lyle’s decision – whether it is going to be attractive enough for him to sign it.
“Like I keep saying, we have got a budget and he has done so well. So there are going to be other clubs looking at him, like a lot of our players. That is the problem when you do well and improve them – it attracts other clubs. That is just the way the game works – unfortunately we lost Karlan. We couldn’t control that.”
Bowyer spoke to Taylor on the Sunday night that Charlton won the League One play-off final – edging out a Sunderland side who also made a major play for him last summer.
“I said that I kept my word to him,” revealed the Addicks chief. “I said: ‘Come to this football club, because we’ll be better than them. I’ll make you better and you’ll score 20-plus goals’. So the three things I said were true.
“He’s been excellent – working with him and seeing him improving. That’s down to his hard work on the training pitch every day. I took him aside and did doggies with him – running. He improved his fitness and it was unreal by the end of the season – he was running around like a lunatic.
“His attitude and mentality has been great to work with.”