Peterborough United’s strength in depth causes opposition envy and Lincoln manager to assess Ivan Toney’s challenge on Michael O’Connor
Lincoln City manager Michael Appleton admitted he was envious of Peterborough United’s strength in depth as his side slumped to a seventh defeat in nine League One matches at the Weston Homes Stadium yesterday (October 12).
The introduction of flying winger Siriki Dembele for £1.3 million forward Mo Eisa 20 minutes from time tipped the game in Posh’s favour as they scored two late goals through Louis Reed and Ivan Toney to seal a 2-0 win.
Appleton felt his side had played well up to that point.
“Their substitutes had a real positive impact on the game,” Appleton told the Lincolnshire Echo.
“It’s a luxury with the quality they’ve got coming off the bench, being able to swap Eisa for Dembele, but that’s how it is.
“For an hour we were pretty good,” said Appleton. “We held our own and matched them in most areas. It was a good game of football.
“The goals were unnecessary, that’s probably the most disappointing thing. We had good possession in the middle of park and one poor pass which led to the first goal put us under the cosh.
“We had opportunities to defend it from then, but it was a good strike from the lad.
“For the second goal their full-back didn’t have much on. We have to be aware of that and drop a bit quicker, especially when you’re up against two strikers who are going to play on a defender’s shoulder and look to get in behind.
“There was a lot good about the performance, but it’s hard to feel good because the two goals were so unnecessary. We need make sure we don’t concede goals like that.”
Appleton felt the departure of midfielder Michael O’Connor through injury following a collision with Toney was also decisive.
Toney insisted afterwards the incident was an accident.
“To lose Michael when we did was a tough blow,” Appleton added.
“He had a big influence on the first half. Losing him did affect us.
“He caught one, with forearm or elbow, on the back of the neck. He’s a bit stiff and sore. I’ll look at it again.”
Lincoln are now 12th, but only five points behind third-placed Posh. Posh will drop to fourth if Coventry beat Tranmere today (October 13).