MANAGER Michael Flynn slammed the display of the officials in Newport County AFC’s draw against Salford City – stating the decision to send off Josh Sheehan was wrong and that the Exiles were denied a last-gasp penalty.

The two promotion hopefuls shared the spoils at Rodney Parade with Flynn’s side failing to score for the first time in League Two.

However, the manager was left fuming that County were not given the chance to steal the win from the spot.

READ MORE: Match report from Exiles' draw with Salford

Defender Mickey Demetriou was sent tumbling in injury time but referee Anthony Backhouse waved away appeals.

“Having just watched it again, how we didn’t get a penalty at the end is beyond me,” said Flynn, whose side drew 1-1 at Salford last year thanks to a last-gasp Sheehan spot-kick.

“I will probably be getting another apology from the MOAS (Match Officials Administration System) and head of referees. It’s not good enough.”

Backhouse also dismissed Sheehan after the Wales international flew into a challenge with Salford’s Ash Hunter.

South Wales Argus:

“The fourth official gave it and I don’t think he gave anything right all game. Then he got involved in a decision where the referee should have a good position for it,” fumed Flynn.

“Josh went in with one foot and took the ball first but he has said that he was above the ankle and with excessive force – if that’s a red card then football is in trouble. They might as well say that if you go to the floor then it’s illegal.”

He continued: “I look at ourselves first and we were not good enough in the first half – I will take that on the chin – but that level of officiating was way, way, way below the standard required for a professional league in English football.

“It was just the little decisions as well. It was strange.”

Nonetheless, County battled hard for a point against a team sure to be in the mix for automatic promotion.

It was a game of few chances, with the Rodney Parade pitch leading to no-risk football, but the Exiles were resilient.

South Wales Argus:

“We weren’t good enough in the first half and after the first 10 or 15 minutes Salford got on top without creating anything,” said Flynn.

“They were first to the second balls and their decision-making was better, making our defenders turn while we were under-hitting it and getting caught on whether to play [on the floor] or play the conditions.

“Salford were the better team. Second half we started okay, had the red card and then I thought we were by far the better team.

“We’ve just got a point against one of the top teams who will be up there at the end of the season.

“It’s the first game that we haven’t scored in the league this season and what could go wrong today did go wrong.

“To play with 10 men and finish the way that we did is encouraging. There was only one team that won in the league as well, so it was a funny old day.”

County remain second in the table, level on points with leaders Carlisle.

The loans of midfielder Jamie Devitt and striker Jamie Proctor look unlikely to be extended ahead of Tuesday's trip to Cheltenham.