Charlton AthleticSport

Charlton boss Lee Bowyer: Play should have been stopped for head injury to Josh Cullen before Oxford goal

Referee Dean Whitestone should have stopped play before Gavin Whyte equalised for Oxford United during the 1-1 draw at The Valley this evening, according to Charlton boss Lee Bowyer.

Josh Cullen was prone in the middle of the park after a 50-50 challenge with former Addick Ricky Holmes – but the referee allowed play to continue despite the West Ham-loanee suffering a head injury.

“I don’t think that their goal should have stood,” explained Bowyer.

“It was a head injury to Josh Cullen on the floor. The fourth official was shouting and telling the ref it was a head injury. We were telling the fourth official it was a head injury. Then they’ve gone and put one in the top corner. On Saturday we had the same situation against one of their players and the ref stopped it when we were in a similar position to what they were tonight.

“I was saying to him ‘you heard him saying it’s a head injury. But you didn’t stop it. And then they’ve gone and scored.’ They know they’re meant to stop it when it’s a head injury. We’ve had it done loads of times to us this season. Two or three times on Saturday. For some reason he didn’t want to stop it. And they scored from it. But we can’t control that.”

Oxford United’s Ricky Holmes helps Charlton Athletic’s Josh Cullen as he lies injured on the pitch

Lyle Taylor had given the South Londoners a first-half lead against an Oxford side managed by former Charlton boss Karl Robinson – but the Addicks were below par and unable to add further to the lead before Whyte’s leveller twenty minutes from time.

“Very frustrating for a number of reasons,” admitted Bowyer.

“We didn’t really play today. We started off alright but then they stopped us well. Their game plan seemed to be working, they just came to disrupt it. The way they set up, kept buying fouls, slow everything down.

“We didn’t do the right things. The final ball in the final third, we gave it away and made the wrong decisions. For me, two points dropped. We can’t be dropping points like that at home.”

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