Burton Albion manager Gary Rowett is set to appeal against the sending off of skipper Zander Diamond
GARY Rowett says Burton Albion are likely to appeal the red card shown to captain Zander Diamond in Saturday's 1-1 draw away to Wimbledon.
The Brewers manager is hoping video footage will show that Diamond did not head-butt his opposite number, Wimbledon's Dutch centre-half Pim Balkestein, as the pair jostled awaiting a Burton corner after 75 minutes.
Balkestein collapsed holding his face and referee Jeremy Simpson appeared certain of what he had seen, as he immediately produced the card.
But Rowett said: "I would be very surprised if Zander had head-butted Balkestein.
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"He went down slightly theatrically and I think the referee, if he saw any sort of contact, reacted to the way he went down.
"I was disappointed because there looked to be a lot of tussling in the box with people's arms around each other and I think Zander was just trying to release himself a bit.
"We will appeal it. We're trying to get the footage to show it to the referee.
"What was particularly disappointing for me was that there were one or two strong challenges in the first half, with arms flailing, which we mentioned to the referee at half-time, and I didn't think he dealt with that particularly well."
The sending-off overshadowed another gritty Burton away performance against a much-improved Wimbledon side and Rowett felt it halted his side's chance of staging a strong finish to the game.
"I felt the last 15 or 20 minutes would be the key point of the game for us," he said.
"We had done all the defensive work really well and I thought it would open up a little bit for us.
"But then we were left with no choice but to dig in. Anthony O'Connor really should have come off, so we were down to nine and a half men, if you like.
"I thought we defended absolutely brilliantly. Earlier in the season, with 11 men, we've been conceding twos and threes away from home.
"But that's two games away from home now where we could easily have lost our heads but we've come back and got a point from both of those games.
"If you'd heard Wimbledon before the game, they were really psyching themselves up. They're fighting for their lives and we've seen it previously at this stage of the season.
"Often, the tougher games to play are the ones against teams who are struggling."
After Wimbledon took a 27th-minute lead, new signing Michael Symes equalised 10 minutes later – after hitting the bar within 25 seconds of the game starting.
Rowett was pleased with the contribution he got from the striker, who is on loan for the rest of the season from Leyton Orient.
"He can play a little bit, he can link a little bit and he can be the body in the box," said Rowett.
"He was unfortunate not to score before he got his excellent goal
"He made the chance all on his own. He got the ball, there was a little bit of a tussle, he got himself free and it was a great finish with his left foot.
"He'll add to what we've got and I was really pleased for him."
Burton were missing Calvin Zola and Damien McCrory through injury and saw both O'Connor and Alex MacDonald injured during the game, while Diamond may now be banned and Ian Sharps cannot play on Saturday against his parent club.
Those circumstances certainly justified Rowett's additions to the squad during the transfer window.
"We've tried to pre-empt these problems," added the manager.
"We knew Sharpsie was out for the next game.
"We looked at the squad and thought well, if we were to get one or two injuries, what happens?
"For this one we had Damien out injured, so Aaron Webster came in and did well.
"Calvin was injured and Symes gave us the target man up there.
"We have to make sure we have enough depth. We're in a good position but we have to make sure we don't drop away from it just because we haven't enough bodies to be able to compete.
"If we haven't got enough quality, we can take that. But if I hadn't got enough bodies, then I certainly would want shooting!"