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Wrexham boss Phil Parkinson: ‘Red Card was key moment of match’

20 Jan 2024 3 minute read
Wrexham manager Phil Parkinson Barrington Coombs/PA Wire.

Wrexham manager Phil Parkinson claimed that the red card shown to defender Will Boyle was the key moment of the match.

The Dragons centre-half was shown a straight red card for a studs-up challenge on Shane McLoughlin after just 18 minutes.

And Seb Palmer-Houlden headed in the only goal of the game after 34 minutes to earn the hosts all three points.

“Going down to 10 men after 18 minutes, it was difficult,” said the Wrexham manager. “We gave ourselves a mountain to climb and we couldn’t get any quality or rhythm in our play.

“It’s one of those challenges where he’s won the ball and caught the player on the follow-through.

“It’s a genuine tackle to win the ball and he’s caught him high. The linesman said the point of contact was dangerous and it’s a straight red.

“A lot was against us, in terms of the sending-off and losing four players to injury during the week. It’s a big disruption and the mountain was just too high for us to climb.

“Fair play to them, they used the conditions well and pressed right on to us. And we never really got a foothold in the game or implemented what we wanted to at half-time to get back into the game.

“It hurts when it’s a local derby and our fans have come down in their numbers and given us great support. But we’ve got nine days before our next game now and we’ll have to dust ourselves down and come back stronger.”

The Will Boyle sending off – was it a red card?

Newport manager Graham Coughlan praised his players for keeping their cool in a red-hot atmosphere as the Exiles warmed up for taking on Manchester United with a 1-0 victory over 10-man Wrexham.

A temporary stand has been erected at Rodney Parade to boost the capacity for the visit of Erik ten Hag’s men in the FA Cup next Sunday and it meant that 9,537 fans packed out the ground for the all-Welsh derby.

Coughlan felt his side used the support to their advantage and he insisted that they were on top before the red card.

“The atmosphere was noisy, and it was intense. It was really enjoyable for our players and fans, who have gone home happy,” said the Irishman.

“The atmosphere was always going to be a tester and we stood up to it and kept our discipline. The place was bouncing and I was really pleased the group kept their composure.

“Today was all about a derby game and about winning, no matter how you get over the line.

“We were really good in periods – more than a match for them and probably better than them.

“I just hope the sending-off doesn’t overshadow how good we were and how disciplined we were.”

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