Charlton Athletic Boss Left ‘Disappointed’ Following FA Cup Draw With Eighth-Tier Side

Charlton Athletic Manager, Michael Appleton, has expressed his disappointment with his team’s performance following their weekend FA Cup draw against Isthmian League South East side Cray Valley Paper Mills, as stated in an interview on the club’s official website.

In the match, Charlton, a League One side, were held to a 1-1 draw by Cray Valley Paper Mills and will now have to face a replay at the eight-tier side’s home ground. Charlton took the lead early in the game with a goal from Scott Fraser but failed to extend their lead despite creating numerous significant chances. They were made to pay for their missed opportunities when Charlton’s Luca Ness scored an own goal in the 48th minute, leveling the score. Despite having 70% possession and taking 25 shots, Charlton couldn’t find the decisive goal, and the replay will be played at Cray Valley’s Badgers Sports Ground, which has a capacity of just 1,000.

Appleton had made 11 changes to his side compared to their victory over Wigan Athletic on Tuesday night, and this decision may now be regretted, as it has forced Charlton into an extra game within an already packed schedule.

Charlton's comeback is sweeter because it was against my former side  Blackpool – Michael Appleton – South London News

Speaking about his team selection, Appleton stated, “I take full responsibility, I pick the team, and clearly, it was the wrong one today. Sometimes you’ve got to manage and balance the group as best as you possibly can. I certainly felt that the starting eleven was more than capable of winning today. And I still do, regardless of how poor some of the performances were.”

Appleton did not hold back in his post-match interview, expressing his disappointment with the result, saying, “It was a hard watch at times, I don’t want to give any excuses to the players at all. The reality is we have to be better, and in the important moments of the game, we weren’t.”

For the replay, it is expected that Appleton will field a much stronger side. However, there was hardly a lack of experience in the side that started on Sunday, so there will be pressure on those players to perform in a different environment away at Cray Valley. Appleton seems to expect his players to rectify their mistakes, saying, “At least we’re still in the cup, and we still have an opportunity to get the job done. When you get a second opportunity, you very rarely see a group of players not take that opportunity. I’m hoping that will be the case.”

The date for the replay has not been announced yet, but it has the potential for a giant-killing, making it one of the standout matches in the media. Cray Valley’s performance exemplifies the essence of the FA Cup, and they are expected to give their all in the replay.

Writer’s View:
Changing a full eleven, especially after a victory, can be a risky move, as Michael Appleton discovered. The FA Cup is known for its unpredictability, and Charlton learned the hard way that underestimating any opponent can lead to unexpected results. Although Charlton is likely to win the replay, it’s a game they could have avoided playing. Credit must be given to Cray Valley for their performance, and the draw is one of the highlights of the FA Cup round. It underscores the importance of keeping replays in the FA Cup, as it creates an exciting atmosphere for such matches.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.