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Manager believes key decision turned Chasetown FC’s FA Trophy tie

Manager Charlie Blakemore believes his side’s FA Trophy quarter-final hinged on a refereeing decision.

The Scholars came from behind to pull level early in the second-half at Field Mill, but were unable to hold onto the lead for long as Mansfield went back in front in controversial fashion.

Louis Briscoe nets in controversial fashion to make it 2-1 to Mansfield Town. Pic: Dave Birt

Louis Briscoe nets in controversial fashion to make it 2-1 to Mansfield Town. Pic: Dave Birt

The linesman’s flag had gone up as the Stags turned the ball over the line, only for the referee to allow the goal to stand after a discussion with his assistant.

It was a decision which Blakemore believes had a huge impact on the overall outcome of the game.

He told The Lichfield Blog:

“The turning point was the decision from the referee when he overruled an offside decision for Mansfield’s second goal.I am still puzzled as to why he overruled it but the goal stood and credit to the lads because they never stopped trying.

“It was a big decision and our tails were up at the time and to overrule the linesman on a decision like that is baffling. But unfortunately we just fell short on the night. We knew we were still some way from Wembley and playing sides like Mansfield you know you are going to be up against quality so to get so close it makes you feel sick when a decision like that changes the game.”

Despite the defeat, the Scholars have enjoyed an historic run to the quarter-final stage of the competition, beating a host of higher-ranked opponents along the way.

And the Chasetown boss believes his players can be proud of their achievements. He added:

“It was a fantastic performance from the lads and we can go out with immense pride. l told the players afterwards not to be disappointed because we got out of the competition with our heads held high – they have been fantastic.

“It has a been a memorable journey and it is one they will remember forever. It has been a fantastic experience for us all and it is just a shame we have gone out. The odds were against us but we kept fighting so I am proud of them.

“The opportunity is there now for us to go and create some more memories in the future.”

Chasetown will need to put their FA Trophy disappointment behind them when they entertain Mickleover Sports in the league tomorrow (March 10), kick-off 7.45pm.

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