"We just hope that common sense prevails," says Millington on Town's appeal over Luke Summerfield's controversial sending-off against Southend

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Chris Millington says he hopes common sense will prevail and that Town's appeal over Luke Summerfield's bizarre red card at the weekend is successful.

The Halifax boss confirmed that the club have appealed the sending-off, which occurred when Summerfield was struck by referee Paul Marsden during the 1-1 draw with Southend at The Shay on Saturday, and then struck the referee in response, with both instances looking to be entirely unintentional.

"As people would expect, it was such an unusual set of circumstances that led to him getting the red card, we felt it was unfair," Millington told the Courier.

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"No disrespect to the referee, I certainly wouldn't swap positions with them, I think they do a very difficult job, but he made a mistake in that moment so we felt it was only right to appeal it."

Actions from FC Halifax town v Southend at the Shay. Pictured is Chris MillingtonActions from FC Halifax town v Southend at the Shay. Pictured is Chris Millington
Actions from FC Halifax town v Southend at the Shay. Pictured is Chris Millington

Millington says he hopes to know if the appeal is successful within the next 24 hours or so.

"Certainly by Thursday morning I'd hope we'll know so we can go into Thursday and Friday's sessions with a good idea of who is available to us," he said.

When asked if he was confident that Summerfield's three game ban would get wiped out, Millington said: "My expectation would be that people will see sense because it's clear Luke Summerfield's struck, flinches and throws an arm up to protect himself, which is an absolute natural response to somebody striking you in the windpipe, whether that's intentional or not.

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"My hope is that common sense will prevail but we've got to rely on the panel that adjudicate and we'll respect their decision."

Millington spoke to Marsden after the game on Saturday.

"He was confident he'd made the right decision with the information he had at hand in the moment," the Town boss said.

"In his defence, when I spoke to him he hadn't watched it back, he hadn't had the privilege if seeing it back so whether or not his opinion changed when he watched it back I don't know.

"But he felt, given the information he had at that instance, that he'd made the correct decision."

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Videos of the incident have been seen millions of times on social media and it has been reported on by several national media outlets.

"I've been told about the response, I'm not a big one for social media so I don't get to witness a huge amount of what goes on, but I've been told it got a lot of traction on social media and that just hopefully backs up what we believed in the moment and what we still believe having seen it back, is that it's a mistake on the referee's part and Summers has just made a natural movement and a natural reaction to the incident," Millington said.

"He's the least malicious player and probably one of the least malicious people I've ever met in my life, he certainly wouldn't intentionally harm anyone, let alone an official.

"So we know all the background, we just hope that common sense prevails when they adjudicate."

Read more from the Town boss tomorrow on the Courier website.

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