Bonne: “I’ve got a lot to prove here”


Macauley Bonne says he returns to Charlton with a point to prove to the fans.

The striker, who notched 11 goals for the Addicks during his debut Championship campaign in 2019/20, joins on a six-month deal following the mutual termination of his contract at Championship side Queens Park Rangers.

Watch CharltonTV's sit-down interview with Dean Holden’s first signing above, or read on for the full transcript…

Macca, welcome back to Charlton. How does it feel to be a Charlton player?

“I’m happy to be back here. It’s a place where I enjoyed a lot of my football. For me it’s time to kick on again now that we’ve finally got it over the line. It didn’t happen in the summer but I’m happy to be back.” 

As you say it couldn’t have come much closer to happening in the summer, but how pleased are you to get it done now?

“From the moment that it didn’t go through I’ve been in contact over the last few months, and I’ve been waiting for it to come back in and hopefully get done. Now it’s done I’m really happy.”

It’s of course going to be your second spell here. Looking back to that first spell I guess you could probably call it a little bit of a breakthrough period in your career. How fondly do you look back on that time?

“Massively, because I took the jump from non-League to the Championship and I didn’t expect to play as much as I did. I didn’t at the start but then obviously through injuries I got thrown in and I think I used it in a way that helped me get better in the game and progress. It helped me a lot playing week in, week out in the Championship that season and that’s what I really enjoyed.”

Obviously that season ended in disappointment eventually with relegation, but I’m sure for you personally there were a lot of standout memories from that year?

“Like I said I think it was unfortunate that things went the way they did that season - I don’t think we deserved to get relegated. For me, scoring goals and getting the chance to play in the Championship was bittersweet. Things went well for me but not so good for the club, but it’s a new era here so hopefully things can only get better.”

You obviously went off to QPR since then and your time there maybe didn’t go exactly how you wanted it to. Do you feel like you’ve almost got something to prove in some ways?

“Very much so. I left for QPR and things didn’t go as planned for me over there but I’m back here now to pick up from where I left off - scoring goals, making people and myself happy in football because that’s very important.”

With that sort of ‘I’ve got something to prove’ feeling what kind of things are you saying to yourself ahead of the start of this second spell?

“Just try to put the last six to 12 months behind me now and crack on from where I left off. Personally, I want to score goals, perform well and stay injury-free.”

I’m sure almost all fans will know what Macauley Bonne plays like, but for those who don’t – maybe the younger fans – what does Macauley Bonne bring to a team?

“I bring a bit of energy, speed, goals and I try to have as much fun as possible. I’m a bit streetwise and you’ll see things that probably a lot of strikers won’t do off the ball and on the ball. I bring a bit of life to the game and I feel like that’s what has helped me get through the leagues. You’ve got to have a bit of swagger about you when you’re playing and I feel like I bring a lot of excitement to the game. Hopefully the new fans that haven’t seen me play yet will see that this weekend.”

You said off camera that you’ve had a few discussions with the manager Dean. What kind of things have you spoken about?

“Basically, just what he needs and what he wants from me. He wants someone who can run in behind and offer something different to what he has got already. From our conversations I feel like I fit the bill really well and it was the right choice for me to come back here.”

You’ve played against us once this season with QPR already and I know you said you watched us up at Man United. What have you made of us and how much are you looking forward to being part of that team now?

“I’m excited because the team looks very structured, and it looks solid working from the front to back. I feel like we’re so close to getting into the play-offs or being where we are now or better. There have been some very good results recently bar the Man United game, but that was a great experience. Like you said, we’re so very nearly there and it could just be a case of needing that final touch maybe, and hopefully I’m it to help us push on and get into the play-offs.”

In the league we’ve won the last two having had a disappointing run before that. Is this a good time to be coming into Charlton do you feel?

"Yeah, it’s on the up. There’s a good feeling about the place and I want to be a part of it.”

Barnsley to come on Saturday at The Valley… are you fit, ready and hoping to be involved?

“I’m ready to go. I’ve been like a caged animal for the last six weeks, well six months. I’ve just been itching to go and I’ve not had that opportunity, so I feel like the first opportunity I get here I’m ready to put the ball in the back of the net.”

What’s it going to mean to you walking out of the tunnel in a Charlton shirt again?

“It will mean a lot. I’ve got a lot of respect for this club as they helped me get up the ladder and they respected me enough to give me the chance a few years ago. I think it’s about time for me to show some respect back and obviously go out there and perform well.”

Do you feel in some ways you owe this club something?

“Massively. This club changed my life for me. I came from playing non-League to the Championship. They took a hit on me when no one else would. I’ve got a lot of respect for the club. None of what has been said in the past was ever meant to disrespect the club whatsoever. It’s just that emotions were high and things don’t always go to plan. That is me saying, ‘look, I’ve got a lot to prove here’ and hopefully I can prove it to the fans for however long I’m here.”

When that interest from us to you did come back around was that fire in your belly straight to come back in?

“Massively, because like I said I left here with a good record in the Championship personally - 11 goals in just over 30 appearances. Since then, I hit that form at the start of last season [at Ipswich] but I haven’t really had that form since leaving here. Hopefully I can get back to that form and put that to good use this weekend.”

The Addicks host Barnsley at The Valley on SaturdayClick here to get your tickets.

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