Appleton had been out of work since being sacked at Blackpool in January but his experience in the third tier was crucial in Charlton’s decision.
He led Oxford United to promotion in 2016 and took Lincoln City to the play-off final in 2021, with Addicks technical director Andy Scott hailing Appleton’s arrival.
“The appointment of Michael comes following an in-depth recruitment process. We had a clear idea of the type of person we wanted, the way they work and how they manage,” he said.
“When speaking to the various candidates that we met, Michael demonstrated very clearly that he would have the ability to take the current group and mould them into a successful team.
“He has worked at the very top level so he understands what high standards are required to win. He is a leader on the grass, as well as in the dressing room, has a winning mentality and has had many positive and negative experiences as a manager that have shaped him into the coach that we believe will be the best person for the job.”
Appleton becomes Charlton’s fifth different manager in two-and-a-half-years but believes he can turn things around despite uncertainty off the field.
“I am delighted to be named as Head Coach of this proud and historic football club and would like to thank the owners, James Rodwell and Andy Scott for placing their trust in me to lead the team,” he said.
“I will give everything to deliver success for Charlton Athletic Football Club. To do this, we will all need to work together; the players, staff and supporters, we all have a part to play.
“I cannot wait to get started. I want us to develop a team that excites us all, that never gives up and that plays on the front foot. I want my players to enjoy playing for each other, to express themselves and feel comfortable in the way we aim to play. We want to build a winning mentality, starting immediately.
“It is a competitive division, and achievements take time, but work has already begun to reach the heights that this club, and you as supporters, deserve. Nothing will be taken for granted. All of us will have to work harder and towards the team ethic if we are to accomplish anything.”