Barnsley boss Robins can’t see sense in ref’s decision

Mark Robins was left bemoaning a lack of luck after his first managerial return to Carrow Road turned sour.

The former Canaries striker was angry that when City equalised, his team were down to 10 men, with defender Jason Shackell having treatment on the sidelines.

Having seen his side take the lead against the run of play on the stroke of half-time, he insisted they were comfortable – until referee Gavin Ward refused to allow Shackell to be treated on the field.

'It was frustrating. We didn't look like conceding before then. The reason we did was that Jason Shackell was off the pitch and was sent off the pitch by the referee to receive treatment,' said Robins, below.

'I just don't know how that can be enforced. I'm disappointed.

'It was so pivotal to the game when Shackell was moved off the field to receive treatment that he didn't really want. It was just cramp. He needed to stay on the field. He was just stretching and the referee made him go off.

'We conceded a goal and Norwich's tails were up and then we conceded a poor second.'

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Robins revealed that Shackell, Barnsley skipper, had a hectic day because of impending fatherhood.

'Jason's wife is in labour in Norwich as we speak and he's got plenty on his mind and he's been up to the hospital today – whether that's got anything to do with any energy that he's lost, I don't know.'

But Robins insisted his side needed to be more ruthless to end their poor away run after three defeats on their travels.

He said: 'After we conceded the first goal I thought there were too many hobbling around with various ailments. It was a disappointing end to a promising game, because it's a long, long time since we won here, and we were controlling things, felt fairly comfortable.

'We didn't need to change. In fact Norwich changed shape to try to combat that and made the changes to try to make something happen and in the end we helped them.

'We had chances enough to kill it without a shadow of a doubt. We've got to be more ruthless, we're a little bit soft. I think when things aren't going right, especially away from home, we don't react in the right way and we have to have more steel. If I need to get more steel into the side I'll go out and do it.

'You look in the record books and we haven't had any wins here since the 1930s so it's stayed with us.'