WINDSOR manager Mick Woodham refused to blame the 3-1 defeat to Ascot United in the Hellenic Challenge Cup final on the controversial sending off of Dan Roberts on Bank Holiday Monday, writes Dave Wright.

The star striker

was shown a straight red card for a foul on James Haworth in the 45th minute at a time when


were battling to get back in the game after going two goals down.

After congratulating Ascot on their success, Woodham considered that it was his side’s failure to deal with the long throw-ins from Chris Ellis that cost them the game.

“We started well for 20 minutes, but then conceded two avoidable goals from their throws,” he said. “We had spent some time discussing them, so it was disappointing.

“My players claim there was a foul before the first goal, but we didn’t deal with either throw very well so we have only ourselves to blame.”

The manager, along with the rest of the Windsor camp, were left fuming when Roberts was shown the red card, claiming the decision was a “disgrace” and referee Ryan Dix had “misjudged” the incident.

“Their fella’s head was knee high when Robbo dived in, so I don’t know what he was expected to do,” stated Woodham.

“Yes, it was a foul and we were worried for their guy’s welfare, but to send him off was an over-reaction by the ref.”

Windsor were trailing by two goals at the time, with keeper Hugo Sobte punching Ellis’ long throw-in into his own net in the 23rd minute.

Five minutes later the Windsor defence again failed to deal with a throw from Ellis and it led to Harry Laflin doubling Ascot’s lead with a smart finish.

In front of a crowd of 322, Roberts had gone close to pulling a goal back shortly before his dismissal. Windsor also created a further two chances only to be denied by keeper Sam Gray.

Woodham commented: “Being 2-0 down at half-time wasn’t a worry although having 10 men did make it more difficult for us.

"I felt if we could stay in the game and frustrate them we might have something, but we conceded a third goal and then we had a mountain to climb.”

Windsor fell further behind in the 61st minute when Laflin threaded the ball through to Dan Price and he gave Sobte no chance with a crisp finish.

Windsor did not throw in the towel and pulled a goal back through Corey Parchment three minutes after he had come off the bench.

It got no better for the Stag Meadow side and they showed their frustration at times, picking up three late bookings to finish with five in all.

It needed two referees to take their names with Dix limping off with a calf injury in the 72nd minute and being replaced by the fourth official, Andy Batten.

The latter’s role was taken by Berks & Bucks referee development officer Lisa Benn, who had been the fourth official at the FA Women’s Cup final at Wembley on Saturday when Manchester City defeated West Ham 3-0.

Woodham summed up a disappointing day for his club saying: “The endeavour and the spirit was there, but to be brutally honest we've only ourselves to blame.”