Jackson looks ahead to Accrington Stanley trip

Johnnie Jackson is looking for his side to build on last weekend's draw with Sunderland as he prepares for Saturday's trip to the Wham Stadium to take on Accrington Stanley.

Saturday’s opponents sit six points above the Addicks in 12th place, and the gaffer emphasised the importance of recreating that performance and determination his side produced against Sunderland last weekend.

The Lancashire side have only suffered defeat on four occasions at home this season, therefore Charlton must be at their best in order to walk away from the game with a positive result against a very physical side.

“We definitely need that same sort of spirit and determination to defend your box and your goal because they are a difficult team to play against, especially at home," explained Jackson.

"They have a decent home record, have been getting some good results and have got a way of playing that makes it really difficult. You have to stand up against it and be ready for the battle first and foremost.

"We are going to need every inch of that spirit that we showed on Saturday against Sunderland if we want to come away with anything positive up at Accrington. If we get that then we want to build on our offensive stuff and be more of a threat going forward than we were. If we can bring both together then we can hopefully come away with something positive.

"It's a difficult place to play football and they play on those aspects and make it really difficult for you. They have got some good players that can hurt you in [Sean] McConville who is the highest assist maker in the league. They do a lot of things really well, like I say they keep you honest, make you defend and we will have to stand up to that."

Charlton have arguably just rounded off their toughest run of fixtures this season, along with the many injuries and setbacks to a number of first-team players.

But Jackson insisted that the upcoming fixtures, coupled with players returning from injury, will hopefully allow his side to start picking up some much-needed points.

“It's been a tough run," he said.

"The run of fixtures has coincided with us being at our most depleted as well, so it's a bit of a double whammy there that we have had to take. It has been tough, but we are getting players back now, going into March with games which I would like to think we can go in and pick some points up and having those few guys back to help us will obviously make a difference there as well.

"I'm glad that we have stopped that run of defeats but, obviously, we need to build on that with some wins now."

Meanwhile, Jackson provided an injury update on Conor Washington and Corey Blackett-Taylor, who have both nearing returns to action after spells on the sidelines.

“Both of those guys are getting closer," he revealed.

"They're back outside on the grass today. We will be looking back on that and talking with the physios and sports scientists to see how they have come through.

"It will be a late call on both of them, touch and go with their involvement as they haven’t had any training and have been out a while, but we're keen to get them both back involved as soon as possible whilst at the same time making sure we don’t push them too early and lose them for any longer."

(Article by Alex Forrest)

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