Charlton Athletic boss outlines the key changes that inspired Sunderland win and hails 'outstanding' former Black Cat

Johnnie Jackson praised his Charlton Athletic players for quickly adjusting to his gameplan as they became the first League One side to win at the Stadium of Light this season.

Sunday, 24th October 2021, 6:00 am

Jackson was appointed caretaker manager on Thursday, following the departure of Nigel Adkins.

The former Addicks captain, who assisted Lee Bowyer before Adkins, is hoping to prove his worth to owner Thomas Sandgaard and earn the managerial role on a permanent basis.

He changed formation for the game against Sunderland, and felt that the presence of an extra striker disrupted the Black Cats.

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Jayden Stockley heads Sunderland into the lead at the Stadium of Light

"We changed the formation, we felt that having two forwards on the pitch definitely helped us," Jackson said.

"We felt it made it more difficult for Sunderland, being a team who plays out from the back, and that definitely helped.

"We just tried to give them simple, clear messages.

"Just about how we wanted them to go and press, what we wanted in terms of how it should look like when we were out of possession, and when it does turn over and we have the chance to break on them.

"It's worked out well today.

"I need more time to really nail down how I see my team looking, but those messages I did give them they took on board brilliantly.

"I thought it was a really good game of football, two good teams both playing for the win," he added.

"I was keen to stress to my players that we weren't coming here to sit in and try to nick a draw, I really believed we could get a result.

"You saw two teams trying to do that.

"I think we created the better chances, though I'll have to look back at it.

"They hit the bar but we missed a gilt-edged opportunity just before that. We probably didn't work their goalkeeper enough but we had a lot of opportunities and openings, and if our final pass was better we could have had more.

"I thought we countered on them really well, but probably didn't make the most of that."

One of Jackson's key moves was to restore former Black Cat George Dobson, who had been out of favour under Adkins.

“I thought he was outstanding," Jackson said.

"I knew he’d be up for the game because of the nature of it and his stint here having played for the club. But I also know what George is about as a player.

“[Alex] Pritchard plays for them as a 10 and he’s dangerous and can create a lot for them. I saw George as the perfect foil for that. What I asked for him, he’s done absolutely to the letter. I thought he was outstanding.

"I can't speak highly enough of the players

"We had a mad week with Nigel leaving on Thursday, so we only had a day really to work on what I asked of them.

"They took it on board really quickly and implemented that.

"I can't ask anymore of them than that."

While frustrated with the performance of referee Darren Drysdale, who he felt should have sent off eventual matchwinner Jayden Stockley, Lee Johnson admitted that his side fell short in the final third.

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