Skip to main content

Bowyer knows Charlton still have work to do

Lee Bowyer has warned the League One play-off semi-final is still very much alive despite his Charlton side taking a lead over Doncaster into the second leg at The Valley.

Charlton had a commanding lead courtesy of two quickfire first-half goals from Lyle Taylor and Joe Aribo.

But Matty Blair pulled a late goal back for Doncaster to give the hosts hope heading into the second leg on Friday night.

“I’m disappointed to concede so late on,” Bowyer said.

“A bit of fortune went their way, it looped up and it was undefendable for Ben (Purrington) on the far post.

“But we’ve got a one-goal lead going back to The Valley. We haven’t been beaten there since the turn of the year.

“It’s going to be tough for Doncaster but we realise it’s another 90 minutes and anything can happen.

“We’ve seen more than ever, this week that has just gone by, how crazy football can be and it’s not over until it’s over.

“Again, we’ll respect them and try to win the game.”

Bowyer – who altered his system to a three-man defence to combat Doncaster’s threat – was pleased with his side’s approach.

“Out of possession we were solid and I think we limited their chances,” he said.

“Knowing the people we’ve got we were always going to create chances. We’ve got Lyle Taylor, who scores goals. We’ve got Joe Aribo with his trickery and he obviously scores goals.

“I knew we would create and it was just whether we could take the chances on the day and thankfully we did that.

“But they’re still in it, they’re still in with a shout.

“I can’t wait for Friday.”

Grant McCann believes his Doncaster side are still in the tie after Blair’s late goal gave them a lifeline.

The Rovers boss was disappointed with his team’s first-half performance but took heart from their second-half display.

“It keeps us firmly in it,” McCann said.

“I thought in the second half we were outstanding. We camped in their half, we passed and probed. We maybe lacked a cutting edge at times but we played our game.

“We possibly could have had a couple more goals. We got into good areas without having a cutting edge. But we’re right in the tie.

“They were two sloppy goals for us to concede and the boys were disappointed at half-time and we had to pick them up.

“They felt a bit better at the end of the game about themselves because we showed more of what we’re about.

“The first half we lacked energy and spark. We lost the ball and we didn’t react quick enough to win it back. The second half we were everywhere and we were much better.”