Lincoln City 3 Charlton 1
The Addicks suffered their first loss of the Michael Appleton era at the hands of one of the boss’ former clubs, as they were beaten 3-1 by Lincoln City at the LNER Stadium on Tuesday night.
Charlton have at times started slowly this season, but that was certainly not the case here as they went ahead early through Alfie May. It took only nine minutes for the Addicks’ number nine to claim his ninth goal of the season.
Scott Fraser, making his first start since the opening day of the season, recovered the ball in midfield and played a wonderful ball in behind Alex Mitchell. Tyreece Campbell showed tremendous pace to get to the byline and pull it back, where May was able to turn it in with his midriff.
It was a bright start, but as the half went on, the home side began to feel their way back into the game, and twice went close when long throws from Hakeeb Adelakun were headed out only as far as Lasse Sørensen, who struck at goal from the edge of the area. The Dane’s second effort looked to be heading in, but Sean Roughan got in the way of his teammate’s shot.
The pressure told, however, and just after the half-hour mark the Imps were level. Sørensen found Jack Burroughs on the overlap down the right, who crossed first time. Lloyd Jones tried to get to the ball first but Adelakun was able to hold him off, bring the ball down, turn and lash it past Ashley Maynard-Brewer at the near post. The winger was playing up front due to Lincoln’s injury issues in that area, but he looked every bit as clinical as the strikers he was replacing.
By contrast, it appeared his teammate Sørensen had not brought his shooting boots. With Lincoln’s tails up, the winger had a wonderful chance to give his side the lead when he was played in behind by Mitchell. One-on-one with Maynard-Brewer, his first shot was straight at the keeper but the ball rebounded back off the Dane and onto the post. Sørensen reacted quickest to have another shot at goal, but this one skewed wide off his left foot.
Even though Sørensen was not able to find the final touch, he was heavily involved and in the 57th minute he would play a key role in the Imps taking the lead for the first time. Played in behind Terrell Thomas by Burroughs, the Dane squared first time for Adelakun to turn into an empty net. It was a simple goal and, despite suspicions of offside against Adelakun, Lincoln were ahead.
The Addicks struggled to get back into the game and Sørensen remained a constant threat. In the 77th minute, his curling shot from was beaten away by Maynard-Brewer but only as far as Burroughs, who shot into the side netting when he should have converted.
Many of the Lincoln fans thought it had gone in and had their celebrations cut short, but they would only have to wait a minute for the real clincher. Alistair Smith found substitute Jack Vale. Vale was challenged by Michael Hector, but the ball rebounded kindly for Sean Roughan inside the box on the left, and the Irishman was able to slide the ball past Maynard-Brewer at the near post, giving interim boss Tom Shaw his second win in two games.
The Addicks will now look to get back to winning ways when they welcome Bolton Wanderers to the Valley on Saturday.
Charlton: Maynard-Brewer; Asiimwe, Hector, Jones, Thomas; Dobson (c), Fraser (L Watson 74); T Campbell (C Campbell 74), May, Blackett-Taylor (Tedić 84), Leaburn (Camará 61)
Sub (not used): Walker, Ness, T Watson
Goal: May 10
Assist: T Campbell 10
Lincoln City: Jensen; Mitchell, Jackson, O’Connor (c); Burroughs, Hamilton, Erhahon, Roughan; Sørensen (Eyoma 89), Adelakun (Vale 72), Smith (Duffy 79)
Subs (not used): Wright, Brown, Makama, Shodipo
Goals: Adelakun 33, 57, Roughan 78
Assists: Burroughs 33, Sørensen 57, Vale 78
Attendance: 7,314 (600 from Charlton)
Referee: Daniel Middleton