Tooting & Mitcham manager Jamie Martin slammed the referee after his team’s five-match unbeaten run came to an end at Sittingbourne.
Martin, and Terrors’ midfielder Taurean Roberts, saw red in the 2-0 Ryman Division One South defeat at Bourne Park on Saturday.
Moreover, the Terrors’ influential centre back Adam Thompson is now out of action for six weeks after departing for a holiday in Australia.
Martin is hoping to bring in Crystal Palace U18 skipper Connor Diamond on loan as cover, and will seek permission from chairman Bill Hill to make Thompson’s stay at Imperial Fields permanent on his return.
“Adam has been excellent for us, and he will be badly missed. I knew he was going, and I only wanted him originally for six weeks as I knew we could turn things around in that time. Now I want to make his stay permanent,” Martin said.
The goals conceded against Sittingbourne were the first past Thompson’s defence in four games, but Martin says the scoreline flattered their hosts.
“I talked to the lads before the game about complacency, after being unbeaten in six games that was my concern and for the opening half hour, we were not at the races, it was if we had stayed in the dressing room.
“Sittingbourne scored a scrappy goal, but after that we really bossed the game but there was no clinical finishing. On a few occasions we were through one-on-one but it never happened. On another day, we’d have scored and won the game, like we deserved to do.
“But the referee was shocking, he was a real ‘homer’. He sent Taurean off and the players all got involved. I went on to the pitch to break things up and the referee sent me off too.
“Even the Sittingbourne manager said I was trying to separate players. He’s told me if I am fined, he will happily back me up in any appeal.”
He added: “Then the referee awarded them a penalty that was a complete joke and you can read into that what you want. It was never a penalty.”
Laurent Hamici could not a debut goal but Martin was pleased with his new man’s performance.
“Laurent set up two great chances and had a couple of efforts on goal himself. His movement and application is excellent and on another day he would have scored.
“If he had received the passes he was supplying for others, he would have definitely got on the scoresheet.”
The Terrors host Beckenham tomorrow night (Tuesday) in the League Cup, a game where Martin says five or six fringe players will get a chance to shine.
They return to league action on Saturday with the visit of Whitstable. Martin said: “How we react to the Sittingbourne defeat is very important.
“We gave the lads a target of seven points from three games, now that we have lost one, it is very important to beat Whitstable.
“I can still see us in the play offs by Christmas. The Sittingbourne result will just have to go down as a bad day at the office, not helped by a shocking referee.”