Wisbech Town boss Kevin Ward fuming over injuries to Sam Spencer and Bradley Fortnam-Tomlinson in BetVictor NPL South East Division draw at Chasetown
BetVictor NPL South East Division
Chasetown 1 Wisbech Town 1
Wisbech Town manager Kevin Ward said “it’s dangerous” to let key centre-half Sam Spencer continue playing for the next few weeks after he suffered another head injury.
The brave Town skipper, who took a similar facial wound recently at Carlton Town, needed both internal and external stitching and faces being out for a month.
Recent signing Bradley Fortnam-Tomlinson also went off injured to be replaced by new signing Hakim Nyariki.
Tiago Nassanculo put the Fenmen ahead in the second half before a controversial equaliser left matters all-square.
It was a clearly-deserved point but not the three needed to lift the Fenmen off the bottom of the SE Division.
Ward – who supplied the Citizen with the photo of Spencer's wound – said of his captain: “He’ll put his head into a block of concrete for you and he’s my player of the year. It’s a massive blow for us to replace our skipper. He has the same injury a few weeks back.
“He’s in hospital having 16 or 17 stitches. I reckon it will be about a month as you’ve got to look at the internal stitching and then the external stitching.
“He’ll want to play but our physio says it’ll be at least another three weeks. The danger is he’ll catch it again. The lad has got a mortgage and a job, and it’s a nasty wound.”
Ward, who has not been impressed by the recent standard of refereeing, criticised the officials and the sportsmanship of the opposition.
“It was a disgraceful challenge. The referee didn’t even give a foul for it. He let play go on. Fair play to the referee, he blew the whistle within four or five seconds after the collision. He didn’t even book the player.
“The referee gave a drop-ball afterwards and they were supposed to give the ball back but they kept on playing and had a shot,” he added.
The visitors went ahead, despite playing against a keen first-half wind, after the break with a neat Nassanculo finish from a through-ball despite the attentions of a home defender in the 58th minute.
Ward was also not happy with the hosts’ equaliser which came via a 67th-minute penalty: “They start to come into the game because the wind did die down dramatically,” he added.
“The lad’s manhandled our right-back three times into the floor. The referee has not given a foul, the lad’s gone into our box and the ref’s given a penalty to them and they have scored from the penalty.
“I’ll stand up for my defender, he’s been fouled three times. We’ve watched it back on the video.”
The Fenmen also face losing Fortnam-Tomlinson: “In the first half Bradley got challenged on the side of the pitch and got forced into the advertising boards," added a frustrated Ward.
"He’s also now in hospital having his kneecap fixed. He’s got a huge gash on his knee. We’re just getting no luck whatsoever.”
He added: “It should definitely have been a win for us, without a shadow of a doubt.
"I didn’t mince my words with the lads. I said that we’ve got to do better when the chips are down as a group. We didn’t keep the ball well enough.
“I’d much rather play bad and pick points up than play good and not get anything. It’s a point gained but we’ve been done out of a win.”
Ward must pick up his troops for next Saturday’s game (February 8 at home to Carlton) and faces missing his two injured players.
“Every week is a rebuilding process," he remarked.
“I’ve got seven days to find quality that’ll replace the ones that are going to be injured,” he continued.
“The amount of players through choice or because they’ve got a better chance of first team football – leaving: seven have gone out and I think I got seven in myself. We’re still outplaying sides, though.
“I’ll be working myself into the ground to get quality to ensure we go into games competitively.”