Belfast Telegraph

Ballymena ace Jenkins knows all about Carroll's red card saga

By Graham Luney

Allan Jenkins said he would be surprised if Roy Carroll is allowed to face his Ballymena United side tonight, however he would relish having a shot at the Northern Ireland international.

The Irish FA disciplinary committee will rescind the red card the goalkeeper received against Glenavon on Saturday after referee Tim Marshall admitted he was wrong to send off Carroll.

Referee Marshall, after consulting with his assistant, showed Carroll a straight red for allegedly spitting but, after reviewing footage of the incident, the man in the middle accepted that the shot-stopper had not spat towards the Glenavon bench and that the dismissal was a mistake.

David Healy's side will play United in a rearranged Danske Bank Premiership match at the Showgrounds this evening with Carroll expected to sit out the fixture even though Marshall confessed in a letter to the disciplinary committee that his team got it wrong.

Sky Blues midfielder Jenkins is watching the suspension saga unfold closely as he suffered a similar fate in August 2014 when he was sent off along with Glenavon's Shane McCabe.

In that case referee Raymond Hetherington acknowledged later that neither player deserved a red card but one-match bans were still served. Jenkins explained: "We'll see how things develop but myself and Shane McCabe had to serve a suspension when we were both sent off and we were later cleared of wrongdoing.

"Raymond Hetherington was the referee and I can remember myself and Shane walking off saying to each other, 'What was that all about?' Despite the fact the red card was rescinded I missed a game against Institute on a Friday night. No further action was taken and that was a relief.

"You just expect someone to serve an automatic ban when they get a red card but if Roy plays then that's fine with me.

"I'm sure Roy was very disappointed with what happened and it was totally out of character. He's got so much experience of playing at the top level and he will feel harshly treated.

"I would never want to see anyone missing a game and Roy won't mind me saying he's even older than me and if the Irish FA were to allow him to play I'd say fair play to him. Roy is a great character and he's always been very gracious when talking about the opposition. He's a goalkeeper we all have a lot of respect for and I'm sure he's pleased he won't have to serve a lengthy ban.

"If he doesn't play I'm sure Gareth Deane will come in to replace him but he played in the Irish Cup final so it wouldn't be a significant advantage to us. Linfield's tails will be up after that fightback against Glenavon."

Matthew Clarke was also sent-off during the 2-2 draw at Mourneview Park and is currently suspended for the game.

Jenkins accepts Linfield will be looking to avenge their 4-1 loss in the quarter-finals of the NI League Cup but he's backing his side to show their class again.

"Revenge might be part of Linfield's plan but the bigger picture is there's a chance for one of the teams to go second," he added.

"The Blues will want to right a few wrongs after the League Cup defeat but we have turned things around. We have beaten them, as well as Crusaders, and that gives us a lot of belief and confidence."

Belfast Telegraph

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