Ainsworth felt it was never a red card for on-loan Leicester defender against Luton

Luton chief thought decision was spot on

Saturday, 10th April 2021, 6:43 pm
Updated Saturday, 10th April 2021, 6:44 pm
Josh Knight is sent off by referee Oliver Langford this afternoon

Wycombe Wanderers boss Gareth Ainsworth felt defender Josh Knight shouldn’t have been sent off during today’s 3-1 defeat to Luton Town.

With 57 minutes gone and the hosts leading 1-0 through Anis Mehmet's first half penalty, Knight, on-loan from Leicester City this season, slid in rashly on Jordan Clark, as he was immediately given his marching orders by referee Oliver Langford.

Ainsworth didn’t think it should have been the case though, saying: “It’s not a red card in my decision.

"The referee’s gone for his pocket quicker than I’ve ever seen and Josh wasn’t even off the floor before he was sent off.

"I think there’s even a little slip in there, there's nothing malicious, there was nothing in the whole game.

"It was a real blood, guts and thunder first half and deservedly so, we came out on top.

"Luton have tried to out-physical us and that's not going to happen, so I was really pleased that the boys stood up to that challenge and got in front.

"For me, if you're a neutral today you're absolutely raging at the referee as that was a hell of a game, 11 v 11.

"I don't think Luton had many chances at all, we did a real good number on them, but at 10 men, they’re going to pick us apart.

"Two set-plays which is disappointing, but it's difficult with 10 men, one of your star performers goes off as well, but we’ll be appealing that was I don’t think that's a red card.

“He’s a victim of a slip and the ref’s got to see that for me.

"I’m gutted for everyone who looked like they were going to see a good game second half, but it was a bit one way and that’s how it was going to be.

"We can't compete at this league at the bottom with 10, it’s tough enough with 11 and I think we’d have done it with 11, and we’d be sitting six points off safety, but we’re still going to give this a go, we can win five from five."

Ainsworth also felt his side should have had another penalty when Uche Ikpeazu was bundled over by Matty Pearson before they were awarded the spot-kick following Kal Naismith's trip on Admiral Muskwe.

However, he also believed the Hatters should have been given one too for a foul on James Collins in the second period, as he continued: "There are two other penalties he should have given.

"He should have given us one for Uche and he should have given Luton one as well.

"I'm not going to sit here like a manager and say it was all us, he should have given Luton one second half.

"We should have had Uche’s, there should have been three penalties in that second half, and not a red card, so for the referee hasn’t had the best day."

However, Town chief Nathan Jones had a different view on the sending off, saying: "(It was) 100 per cent, and I think the referee had three big decisions to make.

"He was excellent today, I did feel it was, it was reckless and we’ve been on the end of worse than that.

"I don’t want to comment on anyone else, but it did feel like that."

When asked for his thoughts on the penalty decision too, Jones added: "I’m disappointed with everything (for Wycombe's spot-kick), one the defending, two, the rashness, but we didn't need to give the referee a decision to make.

"We felt we could have had one as well, so it evens itself out."