PIC GALLERY: Night of controversy at Colston Avenue ends in last-gasp defeat for Carshalton Athletic
Tommy Williams watched his Robins throw away a half-time lead at Colston Avenue on Tuesday night, and then slammed the actions of both the referee and his own skipper.
The Robins were on track for a second consecutive Ryman Premier victory after Steve Butterworth gave them a 1-0 advantage over Harrow Borough.
However, the match was plunged into controversy early in the second half when Robins skipper Adriano Moraes was sent off for an apparent headbutt in the Harrow dug out as he tried to retrieve the ball from the visitors’ bench.
Moreover, it the second time this season that Moraes has seen red - he was about to start the ban for his first dismissal in the FA Cup defeat at Leatherhead - and he is likely to face a lengthy suspension of at least six games.
The melee also ended with Harrow assistant manager Darron Wilkinson being sent to the dressing room.
It all started so well: Steve Butterworth celebrates his opener against Harrow on Tuesday night All pictures: SP79525
With the distraught Moraes watching from the sidelines, Harrow’s Ronnel Dennis levelled from the spot after Paris Hamilton-Downes’ clumsy challenge on Daniel Llacer.
Referee Paul Yates then restored the numerical parity by sending off of Harrow’s James Burgess for a heavy challenge on Tommy Bradford.
However, worse was to come for the Robins in the dying moments when Jordan Berry’s weak daisy-cutter from outside the area beat Dean Sendker for the winner.
Williams said: “The sending off obviously changed it, we were in control ahead of that and so we’re very disappointed.
“Their assistant manager got involved and grabbed Adriano as he tried to get the ball back, and there was a bit of a melee with a lot of their players getting involved.
“I am not sure how much Adriano did, but he should not have got himself in that situation in the first place.
“He knows how I feel. We pride ourselves on our discipline, it is a community club. He knows what I expect.”
He added: “As for their penalty, it looked like one from where I was but I think the referee could not wait to give it.
“It is a tough job, not many people would like to do it, but his performance was poor – and the Harrow management said the same thing.”
Last-gasp woe: Dean Snedker pulled off a fine save in the first half, pictured, but was beaten by a weak effort in the dying moments of the game to gift Harrow all three points
Williams defended his young goalkeeper for the winning goal claiming the ball hit a divot to bounce over his head, adding: “It was a soft winner - it took a massive bobble off the turf, which seems to sum up our luck at the moment.”
The Robins, who go to early promotion-chasers Hornchurch on October 1, have seven points from 11 games and are third from bottom.
However, Williams is convinced they are heading in the right direction.
“I am 100 per cent behind this club, I believe what we are doing is the right way,” he said.
“We are a young side, and maybe a little naivety creeps in now and again, but I believe come the end of the season, we will be fine.”
Handbags: Everyone has a friendly chat before the referee showed red cards to the Robins skipper and the Harrow assistant manager
Gutted: Adriano Moraes trudges off
So close: Steve Butterworth rues a missed chance to make it 2-0 - in fact, the Harrow keeper Berkley Laurencin made a fine save
Shield: Kieran Woodley holds off Danny Leech
Noble effort: Apparently it is Lord Luke Pigden, after his girlfriend brought him the title for his birthday
Battle: Steve Butterworth holds off the attention of the Harrow skipper
Close: Quincy Rowe, left, shadows Jordan Berry - the man who would win it for Harrow
No further old son: Quincy Rowe gets the challenge in on Jordan Berry
Slider: Luke Pigden on the deck at Colston Avenue
One in the eye: Steve Butterworth comes off worse after the celebrations that followed his strike
Solid: Bruce Hogg clears the Carshalton lines
Shame: Dean Snedker's impressive game between the sticks ended on a sour note
Head-scratcher: Tommy Williams has much to think about
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