Alfie May has revealed that goalkeeping coach Stephen Henderson had vital input into his penalty-taking approach in Charlton Athletic’s 2-1 win over Cheltenham Town.
The Addicks number nine converted two spot-kicks against his former club to move on to 17 goals for the season – and 29 in the league in 2023.
May could be seen talking to Robins goalkeeper Luke Southwood after scoring his first of the evening.
“Me and Lukey got on really well and in training I took penalties against him – he obviously knew where I was going to go,” May told the South London Press. “I just asked him if he knew I was going to try and go down the middle and he said: ‘Yeah. I wasn’t going to move’. Where I hit it, low and hard, then if he goes with his feet he probably saves it.
“The second penalty I actually spoke to Hendo. He went into the toilet (at half-time) so I snuck in behind him and said: ‘You used to be a goalkeeper – what way should I go if I get another one?’ He said: ‘Keeper’s left’. I stuck with it.
“Hendo came up to me afterwards and said: ‘I can’t believe you went that way. You actually trusted me.’ I give my second penalty to him.”
It shows May’s attention to detail that he anticipated another spot-kick opportunity.
“If you look at the players we have got then there is Corey (Blackett-Taylor), TC (Tyreece Campbell), Miles (Leaburn) – with how good his feet are in the box – there are always chances to get penalties,” said the 30-year-old. “I never really got penalties when I was at Cheltenham.
“When I scored my first penalty at Charlton and then we got another one, it made me think ‘okay, I need to actually start thinking about them’.
“I was saying on Tuesday morning to either my brother or partner that I’d score a penalty that night.”
The scoring onus on May could only increase with Miles Leaburn forced off with a hamstring injury.
“I hope it is just a minor one,” said May. “It’s a big blow.
“He is a big player for us and has really come into his game now – his physical presence up there is a good outlet.
“He is a big lad but he can shift – get in behind defenders – and he can hold it. His finishing is unbelievable for 20 years old.
“He is probably going to the very top, isn’t he? He’s magnificent.
“But this is football and where the gaffer goes on about needing everyone. If Miles is injured it is for someone else to take the reins and do the job.”
MAIN PICTURE: PAUL EDWARDS
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