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Stamford manager Graham Drury and Spalding United captain Gregg Smith are sent off before kick-off




Stamford manager Graham Drury and Spalding skipper Gregg Smith are both set to appeal their red cards after the duo were dismissed before kick-off in Tuesday night's derby at the Sir Halley Stewart ground.

An altercation in the tunnel between the pair as the teams were coming out for the Northern Premier League Midlands Division match saw them both sent from the field of play.

Drury was forced to watch the match from the stands while Smith's place in the Spalding starting line-up was taken by substitute Jordan Macleod as his sending off occurred before the game had begun.

Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018868)
Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018868)

Smith previously played for Stamford under Drury's management and, with the duo being close friends, the Daniels boss felt neither should have been red-carded.

He also insisted his actions were not part of the game-plan to rule the Tulips captain out of the contest which Spalding won 3-2 following two dramatic injury-time goals.

Drury explained: "I really wasn't winding Gregg up to make that happen because I would have preferred to have been in the dug-out and him play.

Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018853)
Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018853)

"I would rather have had Gregg play than Jordan Macleod and that is 100 per cent true.

"I certainly wasn't doing it to get him sent off. Gregg and I have been mates for years - I gave him his first opportunity in football.

"He was apologetic afterwards because he was highly strung for the game. There was nothing in it and we shouldn't have been sent off.

"We are both going to appeal it and we will go together. We have grown up with each other, known each other for years and there was nothing in it."

Spalding boss Gabriel Zakuani also confirmed that the Tulips will be appealing Smith's sending off which forced his side to change their game-plan.

Zakuani said: "It was unfortunate that we ended up with a red card and I will be appealing it.

Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018825)
Discussions take place after the double dismissal on Tuesday night. Photo: Chris Lowndes (51018825)

"There would have been no excuses about it from me even if we had lost the game though and I wouldn't have blamed it as a reason if we had been beaten.

"It did mess up our game-plan a little bit because Gregg is a big player for us because, when the ball goes up to him, it sticks.

"We lost that physicality up there but we found a way to grind games out and, teams that are going to do well in this league, are going to have to find ways to win games.

"Teams will always try and get in your head but I don't really watch the noise because, whatever we're doing at the moment, seems to be working."



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