BY LOUIS MENDEZ
Jason Pearce says that Charlton were simply not good enough at the back during the 5-3 defeat at Scunthorpe on Tuesday night.
The South Londoners suffered their first loss in seven league outings after a topsy-turvy encounter at Glanford Park. Lee Bowyer’s side had recovered from going a goal down early on to lead by the 22nd minute thanks to strikes from Lyle Taylor and Joe Aribo.
The hosts had turned the game back on its head to lead before the interval, but Aribo grabbed his second of the game with just over 20 minutes left to make it all-square again.
Stuart McCall’s side were soon back in front thanks to Josh Morris’ spot-kick after Pearce was penalised for handball inside the penalty area by referee Darren Drydale, inset, with Stephen Humphrys adding a fifth deep into stoppage time.
“We’re hugely disappointed to concede five goals,” admitted Pearce.
“If you score three goals, you expect to win the game. Defensively as a team it’s not good enough. We know that. In the changing room we had some harsh words said.
“The ref gave a penalty against me for handball which in my opinion was a ridiculous decision. I was stood literally a yard away. “We tried to show a reaction. We were chasing the game and they got one on the counter attack.
“I tried to have a word with him [the referee] calmly to ask him what was his reasoning but he wouldn’t talk to me. It would be nice if he was consistent because Anfernee Dijksteel thought he had a penalty at the other end. But it wasn’t to be. We’ve got a great group of players and we will work hard to put it right.
“We’re scoring for fun at the minute.
“If we can shut it out at the back then we have a great chance. At the moment we’re conceding too many goals. I’d like to say thank you to the fans that travelled up here. I’m so sorry that we couldn’t get a result for them. I’m sure we can get on another good run again.”
The Addicks skipper revealed that manager Lee Bowyer let his players talk it out among themselves initially when they returned to the changing rooms after the defeat – their first since losing 1-0 at home to Peterborough on August 21.
“As players he let us speak first,” he said. “We know we’re better than them and we’ve lost the game. “If we want to be up there challenging for the top two or in the top six, that can’t happen.
“It would just be nice if we could go ahead and hold onto a lead rather than always be chasing.
“Defensively as a team, as a unit, it was really sloppy goals. It wasn’t like they were carving us open and creating loads of opportunities. They weren’t.
“We were in control, it was just silly chances.”
Full-back Lewis Page was lost to a groin injury early on during the defeat in North Lincolnshire, and joins fellow defender Patrick Bauer on the treatment table.
“It’s difficult but it’s not an excuse,” said Pearce.
“We’ve got good enough players to come in and do a job for the team. “[Page] will be a massive loss. He’s really come into his own this year. He’s been an excellent left-back. We haven’t got huge cover at left-back. We’ll stay positive. This is one bad result.”
IMAGES BY KYLE ANDREWS