NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Defender sees red as St Neots Town’s fine run is ruined by leaders King’s Lynn

Taylor Parr (left) was sent off in St Neots Town's loss to King's Lynn. Picture: CLAIRE HOWES

Taylor Parr (left) was sent off in St Neots Town's loss to King's Lynn. Picture: CLAIRE HOWES - Credit: Archant

Ten-man St Neots Town saw a fine run of form come to an abrupt end when crashing to their heaviest Southern League Premier Division defeat for almost a year.

Matt Clements’ side were beaten 5-0 by table-toppers King’s Lynn on Tuesday night – a scoreline last suffered at the hands of Biggleswade Town on Boxing Day.

It was a match which hinged on one hotly-disputed moment as Saints defender Taylor was dismissed two minutes before half-time.

Parr received a straight red card from referee Tim Donnellan for a rash lunge on Lynn full-back Cameron Norman.

It was a decision which split opinion around the Premier Plus Stadium. While the Saints defender put himself into an awkward position with his reckless actions, it was a challenge arguably only worthy of a yellow card.

Saints only trailed by one goal at that stage, but were predictably powerless to prevent Lynn from running riot in the second half.

“We looked like we could hurt Lynn until picking up the red card,” admitted Clements. “We believed he had the ability to get something from the game.

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“But we weren’t experienced enough or equipped well enough to hold out for more than 45 minutes against such a good outfit.

“Taylor should not have put himself in that position, but the explanation the referee gave me for the sending off is not good enough in my opinion. It’s a decision that leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.

“We were given a lesson by Lynn in the second half, but we will not let this result interrupt the excellent progress we are making.

“We have to accept it, learn from it and get back on track.”

Saints fell behind to a fierce Simon Lappin shot after 10 minutes. Only one dreadful finish and one terrific Mikey Emery saved denied Lynn frontman Michael Gash further first-half goals.

But there was no stopping the visitors in the second period as they made the most of their numerical advantage.

Gash slipped in Craig Parker for a second goal four minutes after the restart before a run of three efforts in seven minutes emphasised the visitors’ dominance.

The first of them was highly controversial as Gash tapped in following a Norman free-kick which was mysteriously awarded to Lynn even though visiting striker Leon Mettam was guilty of a scything challenge on Saints man Johnny Herd.

Tom Ward then headed in a fourth Lynn goal before fellow former Saints player Ryan Hawkins created a fifth for Mettam.

Saints are back on home turf this Saturday when entertaining crisis club Merthyr, 3pm.

The Welsh outfit have been hit by serious financial problems which have led to the departure of the vast majority of their players.

Merthyr have lost four of their last five games, a run which includes a 13-1 drubbing at Chesham when they fielded their youth side.

Parr will be available to face Merthyr before a three-game suspension kicks in following his midweek dismissal.

Player-coach David Bridges is set to return after illness ruled him out of the clash against former club King’s Lynn.