Damien Duff finally experienced one of the League of Ireland's great traditions last night: getting sent off for arguing with the officials.
Managers receiving their marching orders is a near weekly occurrence in the division, most often due to disagreeing with the decisions on the pitch.
Duff joined in on the act last night during Shelbourne's 2-1 loss at Dundalk last night, receiving two yellow cards in quick succession as he protested the sending off of Shels player Shane Griffin at the end of the first half.
Damien Duff’s red card. Got a yellow, said something to Paul McLaughlin and the red was produced pic.twitter.com/ammLlFXHMl
— Daniel McDonnell (@McDonnellDan) April 22, 2022
Dundalk would also be reduced to ten men in the second after Steven Bradley's sending off, although goals for the hosts from Daniel Kelly and John Martin meant that Shane Farrell's penalty was not enough for the away side to avoid defeat.
Duff has been critical of the standard of refereeing in the division at times, and while he was careful not go overboard last night, it was clear he was very unhappy with the way the game had been officiated.
Damien Duff critical of refereeing in Dundalk loss
Speaking to the Irish Independent after the game, Duff said he was still waiting to find out the exact reason for his dismissal and revealed he felt there were a number of questionable decisions throughout the game.
Listen, I'll soon find out. I'm sure there will be emails back and forth. I did this, I did that. I've had that with Alan Quinn after the Derry game. You are pushed to the limit. I always heard that, reading the media, you are pushed to the limit but you are not allowed speak. You are muzzled somewhat.
I just walked. Get on with the game, get on with life. It is what it is. I've got the best assistant manager in the league. Joey (O'Brien) can take the reins, no problem...
Even if I thought it was the worst...if I thought it was the worst refereeing performance I've ever seen, I couldn't comment on it. So I'll just pass on what I thought of them.
At the end of the day it costs you points. Does he give the second peno because he doesn’t give the first? I don’t know. Is it human instinct - ‘Oh, I’ll make up for my first one’? Jack Moylan’s one (an appeal which was waved away) is a definite peno. You give yellows early on for nothing, i.e. Griff, then you send him off for nothing; that’s my frustration.
Shelbourne have had a mixed start to life in the division under Damien Duff, although they currently sit five points above the relegation spots in eighth place.