Henry felt Benson had to go but Still disagrees

Paul Benson is shown red against Stevenage
Paul Benson is shown red against Stevenage

Stevenage captain and ex-Hatter Ronnie Henry thought former team-mate Paul Benson could have no complaints with the red card received during yesterday’s 0-0 draw.

The veteran striker was dismissed with four minutes remaining after a lunging challenge on Tom Conlon sparking disgraceful scenes amongst a handful of travelling supporters.

“These days you go in like that you’re going to get sent off.”

Ronnie Henry

However, on the decision, itself, Henry said: “I like Benno, I’ve got a lot of time for him, he’s a good friend of mine and he’s a good lad out there on the pitch.

“It’s not like him to do that kind of stuff, I don’t know whether he’s slipped, but he’s gone in with a two-footer.

“He’s won the ball, but these days you go in like that you’re going to get sent off. That’s what I said to him, ‘I think you’ve got to go mate’.

“I feel sorry for him in a way as I know him well, he’s not that kind of person.

“They might review it, I’m not sure. It looked for me like a sending off, if that happened to us, I think we’d get sent off.”

However, Luton boss John Still and skipper Scott Cuthbert, felt the striker had been hard done by, although the manager didn’t know if the club would appeal the outcome just yet.

He said: “I had a good view, I didn’t think it was a sending off. Now people will say ‘you’re bound to say that,’ but I didn’t, I’m always fair, I think I am. I didn’t think it was a sending off, not at all.

“I haven’t seen it again yet, so we’ll have to have a look, he’s an important player for us, but it is what it is, we’ll move on and can’t worry about that.”

Cuthbert continued: “I was standing there right directly behind him and have just seen him win the ball, that was all.

“I’ve seen the ball go the other way, but the ref and the linesman are right there, they’ve got a clear view of it. They’ve made their decision, so that’s that, we’ve just got to deal with it.”

Still was left mystified how the hosts weren’t reduced to 10 men on 75 minutes when defender Dean Wells was only cautioned for handball despite being the last man.

He continued: “I know we had a sending off, but how their man wasn’t sent off, as last man, for handball, it was a crazy decision, absolutely crazy decision.

“But we’ve had some crazy decisions haven’t we with the Ryan Hall situation, what can you do?

“We’ll do the same as we normally do, we’ll write off, they’ll come back and say ‘yes it should have been’ and we’ll be back where we are, but nothing I can do about that now.”

Meanwhile, on the non-dismissal of Wells, Henry added: “It’s hard for me to say, I was a little way away from him.

“I think he said he got pushed a little bit in the back, if he’s used his arm, I don’t know, he says he got pushed.

“The referee and linesman are closer to it than me, so if the ref has felt he used his arm with a push, he got a yellow card.”