“The ref­eree was com­pletely out of his depth,” fumes Barum boss Dave

Western Morning News - - Sport - BY PHILIP DUN­CAN

BARN­STA­PLE joint-man­ager Dave Grif­fiths de­scribed the of­fi­ci­at­ing in Sat­ur­day’s con­tro­ver­sial 4-3 de­feat to rel­e­ga­tion ri­vals Fleet Town as the worst he has seen.

Barum – who host AFC Tot­ton at the week­end – played for more than 70 min­utes of the game with ten men after de­fender Mike Humphreys was sent off fol­low­ing two book­ings.

Grif­fiths felt the ref­eree’s de­ci­sion to send Humphreys off was wrong as he didn’t ap­pear to make any con­tact with the player, but he picked up a sec­ond yel­low card.

Barn­sta­ple found them­selves 3-1 down at half-time in what Grif­fiths said was their poor­est first half per­for­mance of the sea­son, before they fought back gal­lantly after the break.

But with full-time ap­proach­ing, and Barn­sta­ple chas­ing an equaliser, the game de­scended into chaos.

Co-man­ager Kevin Darch was sent to the stands along with the Fleet physio fol­low­ing a fra­cas.

That was after Barum right­back Ross Jones ap­peared to be hit by a Fleet coach, only to then be shown a yel­low card – much to the as­ton­ish­ment of Grif­fiths and his play­ers.

“The of­fi­cials, all three of them, were the worst I think I’ve ever seen,” Grif­fiths said:

“The ref­eree was com­pletely out of his depth, and had no idea how to con­trol the game.

“The older as­sis­tant should maybe have helped him out but it was a to­tal sham­bles to be hon­est. One of their coaches were sent off, Kevin was sent to the stands, their physio was also sent off – it was just ab­so­lute may­hem.

“I spoke to the ref­eree’s as­ses­sor after the game and he said the ref­eree was close to tears. He just couldn’t han­dle the game.

“Our right back [Ross Jones] was hit by one of their coaches near the end, while he was try­ing to get on with the game and he ended up get­ting booked. I’ve never seen any­thing like it in my life.”

“It was ab­so­lutely gut­ting. In the first half we de­served to be 3-1 down. We were aw­ful,” he con­tin­ued.

“We were down to ten men after 16 min­utes fol­low­ing two yel­lows. The sec­ond one was never a book­ing be­cause he never touched him, their player dived. “

The de­feat leaves Barn­sta­ple rooted to the bot­tom of the EvoStik South­ern League ta­ble after they were leapfrogged by Fleet, who lost 2-1 at home to Winch­ester City on Tues­day night.

On Sat­ur­day Grif­fiths’ men will be look­ing to bounce right back when they host AFC Tot­ton. They will have to make do with­out Jack Lang­ford due to work com­mit­ments, while Humphreys serves a one­match ban fol­low­ing his red card at the week­end against Fleet.

Lewis Slough, the grand­son of for­mer Ful­ham and Lu­ton Town star Alan Slough, made his de­but for Barn­sta­ple at the week­end.

How­ever, he will miss this Sat­ur­day’s game as he is tak­ing part in Eng­land tri­als.

Barn­sta­ple man­ager Dave Grif­fiths was not im­pressed with the level of of­fi­ci­at­ing

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