Michael Appleton lauds Lincoln’s second-half display in win over Charlton
Michael Appleton felt Lincoln’s 2-1 victory over Charlton was no more than his side deserved for a dominant second-half display.
An own goal from substitute Jayden Stockley gave the Imps the lead 13 minutes into the second half.
Charlton, who had barely threatened, levelled five minutes later when Sam Lavelle scrambled the ball home from close range following a corner.
The game seemed to be heading for a draw, but the Imps kept pressing and got the winner their performance warranted when Regan Poole produced a towering header at the start of added time.
“I thought we were quite dominant,” said Appleton. “In the first half we lacked a bit of cutting edge in the final third, we didn’t make the keeper work enough.
“But in the second half we dominated the game. It was a similar sort of performance to the Plymouth one [2-2] two weeks ago.
“For the players to deal with the disappointment of conceding a really poor goal and then getting the winner was really pleasing.”
Lincoln were rewarded for staying on the front foot in the closing stages when the game appeared to be heading for a draw.
“We were positive, were always trying to do the right thing, pass the ball and work the opposition,” he added.
“There were some big performances and there’ll be a lot of happy players going home tonight.”
On match-winner Poole, who netted his first goal for the club, Appleton said: “He’s had seven or eight of them this season where you’re thinking ‘how has he not hit the back of the net?’.”
Meanwhile, under-pressure Charlton boss Nigel Adkins felt two key decisions went against his side prior to the winning goal.
Adkins insisted Charlton should have had a penalty and argued that Poole was offside when the cross came in for his winner.
“The first goal is a deflection – Jayden couldn’t really get out of the way so that bit of fortune didn’t go our way,” said Adkins, whose side have won just twice this season in the league.
“We get back in the game and I’m thinking ‘come on, the game’s there to be won’.
“Then it’s the 90th minute, it’s 1-1 and we’re trying to win the game and it’s a stonewall penalty. The player has grabbed Jayden Stockley’s shirt, dragged him to the ground, kicks him while he’s going to the ground.
“Both the linesman and the referee have gone yes, he’s pulled his shirt, but not enough for the penalty.
“We go down the other end of the pitch, they get a corner, second phase, could we have stopped the cross? Yes.
“But the cross has come in and the player [Poole] is offside. That’s a real kick in the…
“Fine margins didn’t go our way today, that’s the reality of it.”
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