Lincoln City boss Michael Appleton said he was "beyond angry" that one of his players was off the pitch having a drink as Carlisle United scored their crucial equaliser last night.

The Imps manager said he had never seen such an occurrence in a game before.

He did not name the player but said he could not defend what had happened in the Papa John's Trophy second round tie.

Jack Armer scored for United in the 69th minute to cancel out Chris Maguire's opener - the Blues then going on to win 4-3 on penalties at Brunton Park.

Appleton said: "It's my job to protect players at times, but there was something that happeed in the build-up to [Carlisle's] goal that was a first for me - I've never seen it happen before.

"We actually had a player off the pitch, whose responsibility it is to make sure he stays with certain runners...we've got a player having a drink off the pitch when the ball's being played out wide.

"It's difficult for a manager to defend that...

"I'm beyond angry about the goal, and the way it came masked a bit of the good work that went on in the game."

Appleton, speaking on Lincoln's YouTube channel, said he would speak to the player individually about the incident.

"There's nothing I can say to him to make it right, other than [knowing he] will never do it again," he added.

"If it stops someone else potentially having the temptation to do it, we're doing the right thing."

Appleton said he was "frustrated" by the outcome and added that, for all Lincoln's good play at Brunton Park, they did not make the most of opportunities.

"There was a lot to be admired in what we did," he said.

"God knows how many chances we created, but it's been the story of the season, time and time getting into glorious positions, then missing the target, not making the keeper work hard enough, missing the first man...

"They had one opportunity and scored from it.

"If we'd only won the game 1-0 I'd have come in frustrated we hadn't scored five or six. To concede and then go out on penalties...very frustrated."