Mendonca turns down Charlton coaching offer

Charlton legend Clive Mendonca has turned down a two-year coaching deal with the club for family reasons.

Charlton legend Clive Mendonca has turned down a two-year coaching deal with the club for family reasons.

Mendonca, 33, has decided to return to his native north east, having talked his future through with his loved ones.

Alan Curbishley, Charlton’s manager, offered the former striker a post within his coaching structure at the club after severe back and hip injuries ended Mendonca’s playing career earlier this year.

After Mendonca admitted defeat in his 18-month quest to return to senior football, he took up a position with the Addicks, coaching academy players and also spending time on the training ground with Charlton’s first team forwards.

Mendonca is best remembered for his hat-trick in the thrilling 1998 Division One play-off final, when Charlton beat Sunderland on penalties after a breathtaking 4-4 draw.

But his association will now officially end with the south east London club and Mendonca said: ‘‘I had a great offer but there were other considerations to take into account.

‘‘My family and particularly my wife have followed me around throughout my career and perhaps now is the time to bear them in mind.

‘‘It was always our intention to return to the north east when I finished playing football. It’s just a pity that the decision has arrived sooner than I would have liked.’’

Mendonca will make one last farewell at The Valley with a benefit match and dinner to be held in his honour some time in the future, with the date not yet decided.

Charlton chief executive Peter Varney paid tribute to the player, adding: ‘‘We will remain in close contact with Clive.

‘‘He’s become a Charlton legend not just for that Wembley hat-trick but the way he represented the club.’’

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