JIM PARMENTER has called on the FA to have more referee assessors in the lower reaches of non-league football.
The Whites chairman will be meeting with his fellow board members tonight (Monday) to discuss an injury crisis at the club, with THREE key players crocked during the 1-1 FA Trophy draw against Dartford on Saturday.
Craig Cloke and Daniel Braithwaite will be out for at least two months, while Danny Chapman faces two to three weeks on the sidelines, after all three picked up injuries against the Darts.
Jim believes that referee Lee Venamore should have been clamping down on dangerous tackles from the start – and cannot believe that he did not issue even a yellow card following a wreckless challenge from behind on Braithwaite.
The Whites full-back dislocated his knee as a result – although it later clicked back into place – but it has emerged today that he has suffered serious ligament damage.
Jim said: “Dartford set out to do a job on us and were allowed to do so by the referee. Clokey could be out for the rest of the season, possibly back in two or three months at the earliest.
“Daniel is sure to be out for two months and Chapman is nursing a very sore knee. Thankfully, nothing has been broken with him.
“Chapman was the victim of yet another over-the-top tackle and again the ref didn’t even think about getting his card out.
“What was weird was the fact that he was keen to show cards for dissent but not for dangerous over-the-top tackles. The one on Braithwaite certainly was dangerous. Their guy has flown in from behind and gone straight through him.
“It’s about time referees were properly assessed at this level of the game because it seems to me they are not watched enough times. We’ve got loads of players out injured because teams have been allowed to get away with tackles that would be punished at a higher level.
“And the spin-off for us is that if referees don’t clamp down on dangerous tackles we’ll end up with no players left to put out on the park.”
The referee and his assistants appeared to miss a perfectly good goal when keeper Kevin Hudson dropped the ball into his net. They adjudged that Craig Wilkins fouled the ex-Dover No 1 but most people in the ground could see nothing wrong with the challenge.
Whites travel to play Dartford in the replay on Tuesday with a patched-up team, and Dave Clifford and Sam Vallance are two players that are set to be drafted into the squad.
At least, Clive Walker’s side should be boosted soon by the return of another injured player, Tommy Tyne.
Jim said: “Thank goodness we have a big squad. The likes of Buster Smissen, Chris Wright, Sam Vallance and Dave Clifford are here to compete for first-team places. I’ve every confidence that Clive will get the best out of these young players and we can still win matches.
“Obviously, we’ll be monitoring the situation closely and will act if we feel our promotion chances are suffering due to these players being out injured.”