Port Vale: 'Stupid' Sam Morsy slammed after red card costs Valiants victory
MARK Grew landed the blame on "stupid" Sam Morsy as 10-man Vale threw away a two-goal lead to draw with Rochdale last night.
The Valiants were coasting thanks to two Tom Pope goals before Morsy was dismissed for a high lunge on Jason Kennedy near the half-way line in the 65th minute.
The visitors then pulled two goals back to earn a point.
Rochdale players surrounded referee Andy Woolmer to ensure he delivered more than just a caution to Morsy.
But Vale assistant boss Grew had no sympathy for the 21-year-old midfielder, claiming the tackle was unnecessary.
He said: "The sending off changed the game and the only to person to blame for that is Sam Morsy. It is down to him that we've drawn. It feels like we've lost.
"I've known him since he was a 16-year-old kid down in Wolverhampton, and he's always had a nasty side to his game. But that wasn't nasty, it was stupidity. It's cost us dearly.
"I don't think the ref was going to give a red, but their bench jumped up and all the players piled in so he changes his mind. I don't think Sam hurt the lad but his studs were raised and if you do that you've got problems."
Grew admitted the fiery edge to Morsy's game had helped him win plaudits this season as Vale have pushed for promotion from League Two.
But he insists the youngster, who will now be suspended for three matches, needs to know where to draw the line.
He added: "There's tackling and there's being stupid. Maybe two or three years ago it wouldn't have been a sending off, but you can't expect anything else now.
"He's got to learn from it and learn from it quickly because it's cost him dearly and certainly cost him his place in the team. As you can imagine, the gaffer's (manager Micky Adams) is not too happy. He's bubbling, furious."
It had looked as if it would be a good evening for Vale with Pope back on song after failing to score in his three previous matches.
But captain Doug Loft, back from a groin strain, limped off in the first half, and midfielder Darren Murphy lasted little more than five minutes after emerging as a second half substitute before being withdrawn with a tweaked hamstring.
They join defenders Gareth Owen and Richard Duffy in the treatment room, while John McCombe also has another match to sit out after receiving a three-game ban for being sent off at Northampton.
Vale head to Southend on Saturday still second in the League Two standings, five points behind Gillingham, who were held 0-0 by third-placed Cheltenham last night.
Grew said: "Doug's felt his calf and Darren's felt his hamstring so from a squad of 20 we've got five missing.
"John's still banned, Rich is not ready and Gareth is a long way off, but we'll get on with it and put out our best 11 on Saturday."
Match action: Pages 42 & 43