Double trouble for Jim

Andy Fleming faces a spell on the sidelines
Andy Fleming faces a spell on the sidelines
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FRUSTRATED Shrimps boss Jim Bentley is resigned to being without influential pair Alex Kenyon and Andy Fleming for tomorrow’s home encounter with Burton Albion.

The pair were on the receiving end in controversial incidents during last weekend’s abandoned match against Accrington Stanley at the Crown Ground.

Kenyon was shown the red card shortly before half-time for a two-footed lunge, which now means he will be banned for the Shrimps’ next three games.

But Bentley felt Stanley should have been reduced to 10 men earlier in the encounter after Fleming became the victim of a nasty-looking tackle by Peter Murphy.

Fleming was having his injury assessed yesterday but it looks like he has damaged his knee cartilage which may force him onto the sidelines for the next two months.

“I have looked at Alex Kenyon sending off again – it’s a hard tackle but it’s not worth appealing,” Bentley said.

“Financially, you have to pay for the appeal and you also run the risk of the three-match ban being upped to a four-match ban.

“The referee was about six yards away from it and I just don’t think we would have a chance of getting it overturned.

“I am not one for going tit-for-tat but I just think the tackle on Andy Fleming by Peter Murphy is just as bad as Alex’s, if not worse.

“That’s the only concern for me – the level of consistency by the officials.

“Alex’s tackle might have been a red card. It’s hard to see, but it doesn’t look too great.

“I have seen worse and some refs would have let it go, some wouldn’t.

“But certainly the tackle on Andy Fleming was terrible and it’s put him out now.

“He’s going to be on the sidelines for quite a period of time now. It’s just the inconsistency which gets managers’ backs up.

“The referee was only six yards away from the incident and Fleming is going to be out now, which is not great for us because he’s probably been our best player so far this season.”

Meanwhile, a win tomorrow for Morecambe will put them back in the play-off picture in League Two – but a loss could see them nervously looking over their shoulders.

The Shrimps are exactly nine points behind Burton, who occupy the final play-off spot – and conversely, nine points above the drop zone.

Bentley said: “Burton were a similar sized club to us going back a few years but they seem to have progressed a little bit quicker than us.

“They are paying transfer fees and have brought in some big players.

“They have got a good set-up and have players who can hurt you all over the park.

“We want to start looking up rather than down – and that starts tomorrow.

“If we can get a win tomorrow then we can take that into the next game.”