Ifil's red card rescinded

PHIL Ifil has had his red card rescinded, following referee Pat Miller's controversial decision to send off the U's right-back during Tuesday night's 3-1 home defeat by Hull City.

Carl Marston

PHIL Ifil has had his red card rescinded, following referee Pat Miller's controversial decision to send off the U's right-back during Tuesday night's 3-1 home defeat by Hull City.

Colchester United, who are rock bottom of the Championship and staring relegation full in the face, felt very hard done by when Ifil was dismissed after just 14 minutes for a challenge on Hull striker Fraizer Campbell.

It looked a contentious decision at the time. Ifil was “shocked” at Mr Miller's choice of a red card, and his insistence that it had been for “violent conduct.”


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Manager Geraint Williams remained tight-lipped at the final whistle, although he was clearly angry with the decision, which effectively condemned his side to another defeat, and near-certain relegation.

“We are delighted that this decision has been corrected,” said Williams last night.

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“Unfortunately, the decision over-turned won't have helped us on the night, but I am pleased that common sense has prevailed.

“The decision had a massive bearing on the game. You can't say that it cost us three points, but it certainly didn't help us. It was very frustrating, and I was disappointed that a lot of people jumped on the bandwagon and said that it was violent conduct without looking at the video.”

If the red card had been upheld, then Ifil would have been handed a three-match suspension. But the ex-Tottenham defender has escaped this punishment, and so will be available for tomorrow's trip to East Anglian rivals Norwich City.

However, U's boss Williams is still hampered by a horrendous catalogue of injuries. Skipper Karl Duguid joined the list of crocked players on Tuesday night, when he injured his knee during the second-half of the Hull defeat.

Duguid will miss the Norwich game, as will long-term casualties Mark Yeates and Kevin Watson (both out for the season), Teddy Sheringham, Chris Coyne, Pat Baldwin, Danny Granville, Kevin McLeod, Aidan Davison, Luke Guttridge, Aidan Davison and Mark Cousins.

A trip to Carrow Road means a U's reunion with ex-Colchester striker Jamie Cureton, who scooped the Golden Boot award with 24 goals for Williams' men last season.

Cureton is Norwich's leading scorer this term, following his summer move to Norfolk, although he has not been s prolific with 11 goals netted to date. In fact, Norwich have scored the least number of goals (35) of all the 24 Championships clubs.

And there is no guarantee that Cureton will start against his old club tomorrow, especially as Canaries boss Glenn Roeder recruited Dutch striker Maceo Rigters on loan from Blackburn Rovers on Wednesday.

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