John Coleman felt the game ‘descended into a farce’ as his side lost 4-1 at National League North side Stalybridge Celtic.

The Reds went behind early on through an Adam Farrell header before Stanley equalised with a superb solo goal from Rod Young, a triallist who has been at Exeter City, Norwich, Bishop Storford and Grays Atheltic.

However Celtic went ahead through Darius Osie just after half-time and then scored two in two minutes through Blackburn-born Danny Pilkington in the 84th minute and an Aaron Chalmers penalty.

Coleman felt that the challenges being made were going unpunished  – and was upset that one led to new signing Paddy Lacey having to come off after 10 minutes with an injury just below his knee.

“It was good work out in the first half,” said Coleman. “At 1-1, I thought it was an even game and probably like a lot of games we are going to encounter in League Two.

“Stalybridge are very direct and are good at what they do – they turn you, there were long balls and also long throws which made it a useful training exercise – but the game descended into a bit of a farce with some of the challenges which were going on.

“The referee lost the game in the end and I think it proved a false scoreline.

“Saying that, obviously I am disappointed we haven’t won and disappointed we have lost, and lost 4-1.

“A couple of the goals were avoidable and that is something we have got to look at but a lot of it gets taken out of your hands when you don’t get the protection of the referee and the game can quickly descend into a farce and I think at times it did.”

He continued: “You want competitive but you don’t want to see a challenge like what happened on Paddy Lacey. The referee was adamant it would only have been a yellow card in a proper game – even though he didn’t show one – but you wouldn’t get a worse challenge if you looked at 10,000 football games. There is no call for that in football.

“Paddy is lucky it caught him on muscle than bone. If he had caught him lower it would probably have ended his career. He will be sore and out for few weeks because of the bruising and it will take him a while to recover but he is a tough lad.”

Meanwhile on Young, Coleman said:  “Rod Young is a young lad – at times he showed terrific ability but showed he can drift out of the game so it’s something we will keep an eye on.”