Contact us: Got a photo? Text 'SLPICS' to 80360. Got a story? Call the newsdesk: 020 8744 4244
Dons' Ardley keeps ref on Christmas card list
Referee Darren Drysdale may well find himself on Dons manager Neal Ardley’s Christmas Card list.
While officials are more used to getting harangued by managers, players and the press, Ardley had nothing but kind words for Drysdale after the official reversed a decision to give a penalty to Cheltenham on Saturday.
Having pointed to the spot for a push in the box, Drysdale consulted his assistants and changed his mind, giving a free kick to the Dons instead – not that it mattered in the end as Jamie Cureton’s 95th minute winner handed the Dons a 1-0 defeat.
“I would say this even if the call had gone against me, but the referee made a very brave and correct decision to reverse his original call,” said Ardley.
“There was never any way that was a penalty and straight away he has realised and had a conversation with his assistants and changed his mind.
“He could have stuck with it and then said to me after the game he had made a mistake but that wouldn’t have been any good for me if it had changed the result.
“In the end, it didn’t matter and I was gutted as the lads didn’t get out of the game what they deserved.
“I wouldn’t say we deserved to win as we didn’t create enough and Cheltenham had done a lot of work on tightening up their defence, but we certainly didn’t deserve to lose it in the 95th minute.”
The Dons have the chance to bounce back over the next two weeks with games against the league’s bottom two, Northampton Town this Saturday and Accrington Stanley a week later, at Kingsmeadow where they have 12 points from a possible 12 this season.
But Ardley is warning against complacency.
“I don’t think you can ever say in this league that we should be getting six points, this league is hard,” he added.
“We do have to bounce back though – that is what is important in this league, bouncing back from defeat.”
"I might rather we were playing a mid-table team on good form rather than a team at the bottom because everyone expects you to win and when you are not 2-0 up after 30 minutes they get on your back.
“We know when teams are going through a difficult spell they focus even more on working hard for each other.”
Will Antwi and Kevin Saint-Luce continued their recoveries from injury playing for the club’s U21 side in the Premier Cup on Tuesday, where goals from Youssouf Bamba and Chris Arthur secured a 2-0 win over Gillingham and a tie at Queens Park Rangers in the next round.
Saint-Luce could make tomorrow’s squad, but Antwi is still some way from fitness.
Comments are closed on this article.