Boro boss backs keeper
- Credit: Ray Lawrence/TGSPHOTO
Martin: You can’t have people hurling abuse
Romford’s midweek home defeat to Thamesmead was overshadowed by a race row involving goalkeeper Atu Ngoy.
The Boro stopper was booked during the 4-1 loss after jumping over a barrier to confront two visiting fans, who were ejected for alleged racist abuse.
Ngoy and Romford manager Paul Martin were both invited to see the referee at half-time and the incident will be mentioned in his report.
Martin said: “There were a couple of people with Thamesmead jackets on behind the goal and some racist abuse was thrown at Atu Ngoy.
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“Naturally he lost his rag and he got booked for jumping over the barrier to have words with those responsible, who were removed at half-time.
“Obviously I’ll back my player because you can’t have people hurling that kind of abuse about during a game.
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“The referee had to take some action but, by the letter of the law, he should have sent off the keeper for jumping the barrier.
“Several Thamesmead players also went over the barrier, but none of them got booked. It was a difficult one for the referee. Racism is a serious issue, but I don’t want to make too big a thing of the incident — we should be talking about the football.”
Boro have slid down to 15th in the Ryman One North table after taking just one point from their last five games.
They visit Redbridge tomorrow (Saturday) and Martin said: “We’ve got games in hand on teams above us so there’s an opportunity to move up the table.
“I’ve set a target of a top-10 finish. We’re probably struggling to match last season’s tally of 57 points.
“We won’t be taking the Redbridge game for granted. If you look at their last five results they’re probably more in form than we are. But if we play like we did against Thamesmead that should be good enough. Our finishing was the only thing that let us down.”