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Football: NEWELL LEFT SPITTING MAD; Stoke 2 Luton 1.

Byline: Andrew COLLOMOSSE

LUTON boss Mike Newell launched a blistering attack on referee Andy D'Urso over the first-half dismissal of striker Steve Howard.

Howard received a straight red card from the Essex official in the 25th minute for allegedly spitting at defender Karl Hoefkens.

But furious Newell thundered: "Will we appeal? Too right we will! I know Steve would not spit at anyone and there was no reaction from their defender. He knew nothing about it.

"If someone spat at me I'd hit him. But there was no confrontation at all.

"The referee was wrong, it's not the first time he's been wrong and he's cost us the game."

But Stoke chief Johan Boscamp insisted: "I didn't see what happened - but my player said he did spit. For an hour Luton were the better team but once we had equalised I felt we might go on and win the game."

Luton were deservedly a goal up through Dean Morgan when Howard was dismissed, but were pushed onto the back foot in the second half.

And Stoke equalised in the 63rd minute when Marlon Broomes notched his second of the season.

But it wasn't until the first minute of added time that the inspirational Dave Brammer lashed in a spectacular 40-yard winner.

The Hatters had gone close through Warren Feeney before Morgan pounced on a blunder by John Halls in the ninth minute.

Steve Simonsen saved well from Kevin Nicholls in the 20th minute and eight minutes before the interval Feeney's 20-yard shot rebounded from the post with Simonsen beaten.

D'Urso turned down penalty appeals from Mamady Sidibe and Luke Chadwick as Stoke stepped on the gas and, after Broomes finally levelled, Brammer hit the post from long range.

But Luton still posed a threat through sub Enoch Showunmi who twice went close before Brammer's dramatic winner.

STOKE: Simonsen 7 - Halls 6, Hoefkens 6, Duberry 6, Broomes 6 - Chadwick 6, *BRAMMER 8, Henry 6, Kolar 5 (Harper, 59mins, 6) - Sidibe 6, Dyer 5.

LUTON: Beresford 6 - Foley 6, Davies 7, Heikkinen 7, Underwood 7 - Brkovic 6 (Edwards 69mins), *NICHOLLS 8, Robinson 6, Morgan 7 (Davis, 45mins, 6) - Howard 6, Feeney 7 (Showunmi, 62mins, 7). Ref: A D"Urso 6.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Aug 21, 2005
Words:368
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