Made it easy for ref - Lincoln boss Michael Appleton reacts to red card and beating former club Portsmouth

Jack Whatmough made it easy for the referee to send him off last night.

Wednesday, 27th January 2021, 10:03 am
Updated Wednesday, 27th January 2021, 10:47 am

That’s the view of Lincoln boss Michael Appleton, who admitted he had to control his emotions ahead of his return to Fratton Park.

The Imps boss oversaw a 1-0 victory in the top-of-the-table clash as the brakes continue to be applied to Pompey’s promotion bid.

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The game’s key moment centred on Whatmough’s first-half dismissal for a challenge on Jorge Grant, which was fiercely disputed by the home side.

Pompey are to appeal the decision, but Appleton feels the defender made it simple for referee Sam Purkiss to pull out the red card.

Appleton told Lincolnshire Live: ‘I think he just makes up the mind up for the referee.

‘Some people will think it’s harsh. The thing that doesn’t help Jack is that he came off the floor with both feet. That’s the one the referees are worrying about these days, when you come off the floor with both feet and put your opponent in danger.

Michael Appleton. Picture: Pete Norton/Getty Images

‘Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done plenty of them over the years but the game has moved on a little bit since I finished playing.

‘The referee hasn’t got a replay or VAR, he’s got to make a decision and I think he made it easy for him.’

After Pompey swatted side Lincoln aside with a dominant 3-1 win in November, Appleton was motivated to settle the score last night and show what his side was capable of doing.

Lincoln did that, playing at a quick tempo and showing why they’re promotion contenders at the club Appleton managed for a year until the end of 2012.

He added: ‘You’ve got to control your emotions because you don’t want the players getting too aroused

‘The way we went about it was very pleasing.

‘Regardless of them going down to 10 men, I thought when they had 11 men we were the side that looked like scoring the first goal.

‘We passed the ball really well at times. It was a nice surface that suited us.

‘It was very enjoyable and we’ll enjoy tonight.’

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