Pressure is back on boss after home loss
THE pressure is back on Colwyn Bay boss Ash Hoskin after two hugely controversial decisions by referee Barry Cropp saw the Seagulls beaten 2-0 at home by inform Stourbridge in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division on Tuesday night.
After a bright start the Bay faded as an attacking threat against a visiting side on a six-match unbeaten run, but with Chris Sharp and Kevin Holsgrove both going off injured and Zac Corbett sent off for a second yellow card, they were defending heroically.
New loan keeper Louis Gray was outstanding in goal, but the referee awarded a very contentious penalty against the hosts on 66 minutes for what looked a perfectly fair tackle by Rob Hopley to win the ball.
Then three minutes from the end, Hopley looked to have equalised with a great header from a corner, only for the official to disallow it, presumably for climbing.
Videos of the two big decisions clearly show the referee was, at best, very harsh.
With Bay still reeling from that disallowed equaliser, Stourbridge went straight up the other end and secured the points with a late second goal.
Although the referee also sent off Stourbridge substitute Alex Penny in added time, that did not prevent him being booed off the pitch by furious Bay supporters at the end.
Manager Hoskin said later: “I have no idea why he gave the penalty and no idea why he disallowed Hoppy’s goal.
“I’ve tried to speak to him afterwards, but he refused to see me.”
A fifth defeat in eight home games leaves Bay just two points above the relegation places going into Saturday’s game at Ilkeston, with Sharp and Holsgrove rated very doubtful and central defender Jordan Fagbola still sidelined with a hamstring strain.
With Hopley having to play at the back because of Fagbola’s injury, Hoskin is struggling for strikers, with new Dutch signing Alfons Fosu-Mensah so disappointing when he came on for his debut last Saturday that he did not even make the squad on Tuesday.
At least the Seagulls ended a seven- match winless run at the weekend when they came from behind to beat second-bottom Stamford 2-1.
The visitors took the lead on 18 minutes, but Bay were level two minutes later when Cory Williams was brought down in the area and John Dillon scored from the penalty spot.
The match winner came on 31 minutes with well-struck 25 yard free kick into the top corner by Luke Denson and although the Seagulls struggled to test the keeper in a nervy second half, they held on for three very welcome points.
“We’ve played better and lost, but I was delighted with the character we showed to come back and win after going behind,” said the manager.
“If we keep showing that same desire we’ll turn the corner.”
Colwyn Bay celebrate their second goal in last Saturday’s victory over Stamford. The 2-1 result ended a seven-match winless run for the Seagulls. Pic: STEVE LEWIS