Dismayed Still will appeal Benson’s red card

John Still
John Still

Hatters boss John Still confirmed the club would appeal striker Paul Benson’s red card received at Dagenham & Redbridge last night, but isn’t expecting it to be overturned.

The Luton forward was dismissed after 38 minutes against his former club, for a high boot on defender Ian Gayle, and could now miss Town’s final three league matches of the campaign.

“We’ll appeal but I don’t give ourselves any chance, I don’t.”

John Still

Still said: “We’ll appeal, but when Steve McNulty got sent off earlier this season (against York) and their player got sent off as well, they were so far away from sendings off, I thought it was embarrassing and neither of them got off.

“Well we’ll appeal but I don’t give ourselves any chance, I don’t. I’m dismayed at some of the things, but we can’t do anything about them.

“If someone goes in maliciously, but he doesn’t even know where the player is. His foot is up to the ball, but there’s no good moaning about it as it is what it is.”

Keeper Elliot Justham felt official Darren Sheldrake could have taken more time before brandishing the red as he said: “I couldn’t see it personally, but the boys have said, if the referee used a bit of common sense.

“Benno’s not even looking at the player, he’s not that sort of bloke, the ref’s just made a snap decision and unfortuately its gone against us.”

While midfielder Jonathan Smith also thought it was a hasty decision, as he said: “It’s one of those, I’d have to see it again, but in League Two you get challenges like that.

“It’s not always a red card if a high challenge goes in and I think the ref was quick to get the red card out.”

Meanwhile, Still was also highly critical of referee Sheldrake’s decision not to award Town a penalty when Luke Wilkinson tumbled in the area from a corner.

The boss added: “I must have cracked 20 mirrors to lose players to injury, sent off and how many penalties have we had not given this year?

“I’ve just looked at and it’s a penalty, it’s not even close. The thing that does me is he’s (Sheldrake) looking at it and not given it.

“It’s so blatant it was embarrassing. Both arms are around his waist, even Wayne (Burnett, Daggers boss) said to me it was a penalty. But it wasn’t just a penalty, it was an unbelievable penalty.

“How many have we had now though? I can’t for the life of me fathom it out, I really can’t.

“Officials have a really difficult job, particularly on corners as there’s pushing from both ways, but I said to him, if one of my players pulls someone down, give a penalty, he won’t do it again.

“I find that hard to accept, I don’t want anything, but if we get something, we got one penalty at Tranmere and when was the last time before that?”