SALFORD City manager Gary Bowyer was left frustrated by referee Leigh Doughty's performance following his side's 1-0 defeat at Colchester United.

The Ammies finished the game with only ten men, after Di'Shon Bernard and Ash Hunter were both given their marching orders.

And Bowyer felt Salford should have been awarded a late penalty, after Robbie Gotts tumbled under Ryan Clampin's challenge in the area.

Colchester substitute Josh Bohui's second-half strike proved the difference between the two sides at the JobServe Community Stadium.

Bowyer said: “It was frustrating.

“We didn’t start the game particularly well and after that in my opinion – and of course, I see it differently to others – but the game has been influenced by the referee’s performance today.

“Managers come out and say that time and time again and I understand that but it has.

“The booking (for Di’Shon Bernard) isn’t actually a foul, never mind a booking – it’s incredible.

“He couldn’t wait to get him sent off and we should have had a penalty with Robbie Gotts, it’s a stonewall penalty.

“I’ve seen it back and between the referee and the linesman, they don’t give it.

“Colchester sat off us and even when we had ten men, we had 50 per cent of possession and the lads have had a go.

“George Boyd went on a brilliant run and just couldn’t get the finishing touch but there wasn’t much in the game.

"George has been terrific ever since he came in.

"He's trained well every day and I don't expect anything different to what he gave us today - he's a great role model."

Salford's defeat at Colchester leaves them two points outside of the play-off places in League Two, with one game remaining.

The Ammies host Leyton Orient in their final game next weekend, knowing they must win and hope other results go their way if they are to clinch a top-seven finish.

"We said several weeks ago that it would go to the wire," added Bowyer. "After we drew against Grimsby, the lads were really disappointed but we said to them then that it would go to the wire and you've seen what's happened today.

"Teams scoring in the last minute, teams conceding then and places changing - and that's exactly what will happen next week."