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Tooting and Mitcham result 'wasn't the worst point in the world', says Marlow boss Bartley

Jordan Brown

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Marlow boss Mark Bartley admitted Saturday’s goalless draw at Tooting & Mitcham wasn’t the worst point in the world, particularly after Jordan Brown’s ‘ridiculous’ sending off late in the game.

The Blues gave a decent account of themselves in South London and Bartley felt they might just have nicked a win, but for the dismissal of Brown just three minutes after he came on a substitute.

“I thought we played pretty well,” he said.

“I think that’s the second game in a row where our performance level has been right but we’ve not managed to pick up three points.

“We made a change late in the game to try and do just that and we’ve suffered from a ridiculous red card. Jordan Brown comes on, makes a tackle and gives away a foul but gets sent off for serious foul play which is a joke.

“He’s just made a big rick. I’ve spoken to him afterwards because I thought he had a good game apart from that. But you can’t be making those calamitous decisions because I think it’s cost us an opportunity to win. We got ourselves into a position where we could have stolen a win and the referee has curtailed that.

“After that we’ve had to dig in and hold on a bit.

“It’s not the worst point in the world because Tooting are a decent side.”

Bartley had been hoping to add some much-needed firepower to his squad ahead of the contest, but was thwarted by red tape and the snail-like pace of the league to get former Coggeshall Town striker Nnamdi Nwachuku registered in time.

Bartley admits ‘goals are needed’ for the side to start turning draws into wins, but with Nwachuku now registered and midfielder Lewis Gabbidon returning to the fold after a couple of seasons away, he’s excited about what the next few weeks hold for his club. We need goals first and foremost,” said Bartley.

“We’ve brought in Nnamdi and he solves the problems we’ve got of not converting chances. Having him in will help.

“We’ve also resigned Lewis who will be a huge signing for us in the middle of the park.

“With what our performance levels have been in the last couple of games, I’m excited about what the next few games hold for us.”

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Marlow boss Mark Bartley has confirmed midfielder Tristan Campbell is likely to miss the rest of the season through injury and admitted he’ll be a huge loss for the Blues.

Campbell, and fellow midfielder Junaid Bell, are both long-term absentees for the club, but Bartley is at least hopeful Bell will return for the side’s run-in.

By that stage he’ll hope the Blues have rediscovered some form and are challenging for a play-off spot, and – with striker Nnamdi Nwachuku now registered and Lewis Gabbidon returning to the club – there is real belief that Marlow can begin to claw their way back up the table.

On Saturday they suffered a fourth successive league draw in a goalless stalemate at Tooting & Mitcham.

Both sides cancelled each other out for long periods but the Blues’ hopes of taking all three points from the game were frustrated by Jordan Brown’s late dismissal, minutes after coming on as a sub.

“Tristan Campbell and Junaid Bell, they’re more long-term injuries,” said Bartley.

“I think Tristan’s season’s probably finished now and hopefully we’ll get him back next season .

“Junaid is out till at least the run-in, so those guys don’t look like returning quickly.

“But we’ve got Lewis Gabbidon coming in who’ll hopefully add a lot to us and Chris Ovenden coming back as well so we’re in a better state.

“Chris has an appointment next week which will hopefully give him the all clear to start playing again.

“He’ll (Campbell) be a huge miss. He’s got one of the best footballing brains at this level. He understands the game really well. He’s intelligent, he’s a communicator.

“He takes what the manager wants onto the pitch and communicates that to the players.

“He sees the picture really, really well. But hopefully he’ll be back at the beginning of next season and we can get him involved again.”

Marlow host Hertford FC at the Alfred Davis Memorial Ground on Saturday, and Bartley is targeting all three points from the clash.

They sit 12th in the table, five points adrift of 11th placed Bracknell Town and nine points off the play-off places.

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