Yeovil Town manager Darren Sarll has backed his goalkeeper Grant Smith for criticising referee Scott Jackson‘s decision to red card Sonny Blu Lo-Everton in the Boxing Day defeat at Torquay United.
The dismissal after 64 minutes at Plainmoor has been overturned following an appeal meaning the on-loan Watford forward will be available for Sunday’s rematch with Gary Johnson’s side on Sunday.
But, Smith, who also saw red for “foul and abusive language” after the final whistle, is banned for the Gulls’ game and the FA Cup third round tie with AFC Bournemouth with Sarll looking to bring in a loan keeper for both matches.
Speaking to the press on Thursday, the manager said: “I don’t put too much blame on the referee, he went with his assistant he used his team in the same way I use Terry (Skiverton, assistant manager) when I am making decisions.
“He used his team and got it horrendously wrong and it cost us three points. The biggest disappointment I have with that is when you look at the subsequent dismissal of Grant Smith, he is probably right.
“If players perform badly in my dressing room they get told, all Grant Smith did was tell (the referee) he did not perform very well.
“Unfortunately because of the ego-centric behaviour, we lose a really important player in Grant Smith.”
Listeners of the Gloverscast podcast were the first to hear the news that Lo-Everton’s appeal had been successful – well, after followers of our Twitter and Facebook channels, of course. Having the only person in Britain who can make the FA’s website work (in Ben Barrett) paid dividends there.
📰 | BREAKING NEWS…..maybe!
— Gloverscast 🎙⚽️💚 (@gloverscast) December 30, 2021
The boss admitted the dismissal of Lo-Everton for dangling a foot at Torquay’s Tom Lapslie was petulant from the 19-year-old.
He said: “My disappointment was that Sonny was pivotal to our improvement in the opening stages of the second half and when he gave the referee a decision.
“It was petulance, people are like that in your 30s, it’s an emotional decision, nothing to do with your age. “
In other news at this week’s press conference, the manager said…..
- His decision to look to bring a keeper in on loan for the next two fixtures was not a reflection on the ability of his back-up keeper Max Evans.
The manager said he was speaking with Premier League, Championship and League One clubs about getting in a stand-in stopper during Grant Smith’s absence.
Of Evans, he said: “You can do more harm than good with these young players when they are thrown in at thew wrong time.
“We had a plan for Max this year and we will stick to that plan, so we will look to add to the team with the loan market.
“That is no disrespect to Max, the plan for Max was to try and build him through a certain type of game and a certain type of experience.”
Following our Gloversblog post weighing up the two options, supporters on our Twitter channel voted 73% in favour of giving Evans the gloves on Sunday.
- Injury victims defender Mark Little and striker Joe Quigley could both be back involved in for the weekend – and if they’re not, they’re certain to be involved in next weekend’s FA Cup tie with AFC Bournemouth.
The manager said Quigley had only trained for “three or four days” but was looking “surprisingly strong” considering, and said Little was “very close” having picked up an injury in pre-season.
Sarll said: “That latest I would see Mark being involved is the FA Cup, so he could involved Sunday and Joe could be as well.
“Joe has had less time training but he’s been very strong, he looks like he’s in a race to get back.”