WORTHING manager Chris White blasted the match officials and his sides’ defence as Rebels crashed 3-2 to an injury-time winner against Walton Casuals at Woodside Road this afternoon (Saturday).
White, who was sent to the stands in the second half of the Ryman League Division 1 South clash, felt that his side should have had two penalties in the closing stages after Terry Dodd was hauled down in the box, but only a free kick was awarded, while the other for a blatant handball in the area.
These were both with the scores level at 2-2, and it looked as though Rebels had then won it in injury time as substitute George Gaskin, who came of the bench for his debut having signed from County League Division 1 side Wick, stroked home his second of the afternoon after a well-worked move but was adjudged to be in an offside position.
From the resulting free kick a long ball forwards found Casuals’ Danny Buckle, who powered into the box and drilled home the winner deep into injury time, sparking wild protests.
Buckle had put Casuals ahead in the 40th minute from the penalty spot after Ryan Timms gave away a soft foul in the box, giving the away side the lead at the break.
After a poor first half Worthing sprang to life in the second and Mike Huckett finished off a fine solo goal to put them level on 63 minutes, while striker Gaskin prodded home six minutes later to put Rebels ahead.
Goalkeeper Tony Di Bernardo failed to clear a ball forwards gifting Joe Kelly an equaliser on 73 minutes, before the late drama saw Casuals pinch it.
Frustrations boiled over after the game as Worthing players and staff confronted the referee, and White fumed afterwards: “I thought the ref was awful today. I haven’t said it much this season but I am honest with my players if I think they have been bad and I’m the same with officials, I thought they were extremely poor.
“When you get 2-1 up you have to see games out and we didn’t do that. And their last two goals came from the worst defending you’ll see.”
For a full report and reaction see Thursday’s Worthing Herald.