Chris Solly announces his retirement


Everyone at Charlton Athletic would like to wish a very happy retirement to former Addick Chris Solly.

The 33-year-old came through the club's esteemed academy and played 313 games for the Addicks, scoring three goals. A former Charlton captain, Solly was part of two promotions and won back-to-back Player of the Year awards in 2011/12 and 2012/13 and one Young Player of the Year award in 2011/12.

Announcing his retirement on social media, Solly said:

Making this decision for any player can never come easy but this is my time now to say goodbye to my footballing playing days!

It has been an absolute privilege to play this game and represent two clubs that will both hold huge places in my heart, allowing me to create some of the best days of my life.

Breaking through at Charlton was always my dream growing up so to not only do that but to go on and make over 300 appearances, achieve two promotions, two Player Of The Year awards and then captain the side, was way more than I could have ever imagined. Spending 18 years at one club is a rarity for any player, and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity the club gave me, and I cherished every single day! It really is a special club filled with so many special people!

The dressing room will be my biggest miss and the memories created with my teammates throughout the years are endless. I was fortunate to play with some incredible players and training, competing, and having success with you all has created genuine bonds and friendships that will last a lifetime.

A big thank you to all the managers I was lucky enough to play under. Your knowledge, trust, and belief in me enabled me to have the career I did, special mentions to Phil Parkinson giving me my debut, Chris Powell creating the best side I played in and my most enjoyable time as a player, captaining under Karl Robinson, promotion again under Lee Bowyer and working closely with Dennis Kutrieb gaining my 3rd promotion! All had big impacts on me and will no doubt stand me in good stead going into coaching.

To all the coaches I worked with, that went above and beyond to help prepare me to perform at the levels required. From Steve Avory to Steve Gritt, John Humphrey, Damian Matthew, Mark Kinsella, Alex Dyer and all the others I haven't mentioned, I genuinely can't thank you enough!

I couldn't bow out without saying a special thank you to all the medical guys that I've worked closely with throughout my career to enable me to play this long. It's been well documented about my knee issues and to be told at 22 I had no chance of playing until 30, to be sat writing this at 33 is proof I gave absolutely everything alongside some excellent medical guidance. Erol Umut helping guide me through most of my career, Lawrence Bloom and Alistair Thrush I cannot thank you enough.

Joining Ebbsfleet during the pandemic has turned out to be an incredible decision that has brought great success, a huge love for the club and opportunities as a Player/Coach to work on the other side of the footballing world. Achieving promotion in the style we did, and then helping to keep the club in the National League has been brilliant. The club really does have the platform, spirit, and drive to keep improving and with Damian as CEO, Danny and Anwar in charge, next season really looks like an exciting challenge for the club.

No words could be sufficient for how thankful I am for the love and support from my family and friends. My mum and dad travelling the country ensuring I never missed a single session, always supporting me, the support from my wife through the lows, the defeats, the injuries, I can't thank you enough. My two kids following the final few years of my career has given us memories to last a lifetime.

Football helped teach me everything I know, and now is the time to start passing on my knowledge and experiences to help others chasing their dreams. One huge chapter closes but I couldn't be any more ready and excited by the coaching world of football!

Thank you


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