Stoke City manager Mark Hughes was furious with the decision that saw Steven N'Zonzi sent off in the 1-0 defeat at Sunderland.
Stoke slipped to a fifth defeat in six Premier League games on Wednesday, thanks to Adam Johnson's tap-in in the 17th minute at the Stadium of Light.
The visitors had opportunities to level with Ryan Shawcross seeing Vito Mannone pull of a superb stop from point-blank range shortly before half-time, while the centre-back hit the crossbar in the closing stages.
But Hughes was incensed that N'Zonzi was shown a second yellow card and subsequent red in the 52nd minute, with referee Robert Madley deeming the midfielder had tugged Jozy Altidore to ground when the striker had broken free of the defence, after receiving his first caution for hauling down the American in the first half.
"It was a performance of real character and desire," said Hughes. "Unfortunately on too many occasions this season we've been hurt by refereeing decisions that have impacted upon the game.
"Once again we're talking about a situation that I feel was a poor decision by the referee. It's difficult for him, the lad Altidore has gone down easily looking for an advantage. I felt on the night too much of that was going on to be perfectly honestly.
"The referee has to be able to look through that and understand what's happening but he's bought a challenge where there's very minimal contact.
"The lads gone down easy, the referee deemed it necessary to give Steven a second yellow for that challenge which is unbelievable in my opinion."
With the January transfer window due to shut on Friday, Hughes confessed it is unlikely he will add to his squad, despite fresh links with Sunderland's Lee Cattermole, who took no part in the game.
"I haven't had an update because I've been at the game," he added. "At the moment the possibility of getting more in isn't high I would suggest.
"But we'll see things happen quickly in the window. If we don't get anyone else in so be it. The group I've got showed they're an excellent group."
|Coach: G. Poyet|
for P. Bardsley 46'
for J. Altidore 67'
for A. Johnson 87'
|Sutton United 0 Arsenal 2: Perez and Walcott break minnows´ stern resolve|
|Walcott brings up 100 goals for Arsenal|
|Simeone will make late Oblak call for Leverkusen clash|
|AFC Champions League Review: In-form El Arabi gives Lekhwiya dream start, Diop saves Al Ahli|
|Fabinho disagrees with Guardiola over favourites tag|
|Guardiola hails Bielsa as best in the world|
|Jardim insists Monaco will not change style for Manchester City clash|
|Clattenburg´s Premier League career not over yet|
|Dortmund could renew Tuchel deal|
|Chicharito return to form boosts Schmidt´s Leverkusen for Atletico test|
|Iniesta sees Verratti as his successor - Matuidi|
|Ramos did not make history at Sevilla like me - Alves questions Real Madrid captain|
|Vertonghen feels Tottenham deserve silverware|
|Agent denies Lucas Perez exit claims|
|Barcelona forward Neymar to stand trial after losing appeal|
|City history can´t compare to United, Liverpool – De Bruyne wants to make Champions League impressio|
|Europa League the priority for United´s Mata as EFL Cup final looms|
|Winning the FA Cup ´may not save Wenger´|
|Falcao perfect for ´killers´ Monaco - Guardiola wary of Champions League threat to Manchester City|
|Ancelotti asked to explain middle finger gesture|
|Ribery closing in on Bayern Munich return|
|Nani eager for improving Valencia to tackle Real Madrid|
|Rashford eyes Chelsea revenge after huge FA Cup draw|
|Glorious Griezmann and Aguero´s knockout drought - Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Otamendi´s agent talks up Real Madrid switch|
|He has to get used to it – Montella reacts to Bacca boos|
|Low hopes to discover Germany´s Luis Suarez|
|Mourinho unsure if Rooney will recover for EFL Cup final|
|Rami rejects talk of Marseille switch|
|Tarnat tips Manchester City´s Sane to become Germany star|
|I don´t see why he should quit - Begovic tips Terry to continue|
|PSG ´weakened´ without Ibrahimovic, claims Monaco´s Bakayoko|
|Low believes in ´locksmith´ Gotze|
|No pain, no gain for Cristiano Ronaldo|
|Barcelona have no idea how to treat players - Dani Alves slams Camp Nou board|
|Low: Germany´s youngsters must be good enough to beat Messi and Ronaldo|
|Mandorlini replaces Juric at Genoa|
|Liverpool could face ´new´ Leicester – Klopp|
|Corchia excited by Bielsa arrival but Lille future remains uncertain|
|Wenger: I threw up after first loss as coach|
|Conte wants fairytale finish for Terry|
|Iniesta: Barcelona haven´t lost faith in Luis Enrique|
|Mourinho knew Ibrahimovic would be ´massive´ for United|
|Ter Stegen doesn´t understand Barcelona fans whistling|
|´He is doing a fantastic job´ – Bartomeu backs Luis Enrique|
|Guardiola slams ´unacceptable´ Wenger treatment|
|Spalletti: Roma goal machine Dzeko now believes he´s world class|
|Emery refuses to blame referee after PSG are held|
|Montella dedicates AC Milan win to Berlusconi|
|The players don´t need whistles – Luis Enrique hits out at fans|
|Brazilian game called off due to TV dispute|
|Chelsea are already Premier League champions, says United boss Mourinho|
|Barcelona 2 Leganes 1: Late Messi penalty spares Ter Stegen´s blushes|
|Paris Saint-Germain 0 Toulouse 0: Champions spill valuable points|
|AC Milan 2 Fiorentina 1: Deulofeu strike keeps European hopes alive|
|Attitude got Man United through - Mourinho|
|Roma 4 Torino 1: Dzeko strikes again|
|Lincoln face Sutton or Arsenal in FA Cup quarter-finals, Chelsea host Man United|
|Neuer slams Jarstein after brawl|
|Blackburn Rovers 1 Manchester United 2: Substitutes Pogba and Ibrahimovic combine for late winner|
|Inter insist Perisic going nowhere, rule out move for Verratti|
|Borussia Monchengladbach 1 RB Leipzig 2: Forsberg and Werner reignite title bid|
|Training-ground meetings paid dividends - Pochettino|
|I´m trying to find a team - Berbatov open to offers|
|Inspired by Zeman´s return, Pescara hammer Genoa 5-0|
|Gabigol wants to make history after Inter breakthrough|
|Chievo 1 Napoli 3: Sarri´s men bounce back from Champions League disappoitment|
|Alfonso Perez calls for Pique to quit international football over political beliefs|
|Benatia refuses to question Allegri´s decisions|
|Fulham 0 Tottenham 3: Kane hat-trick fires Spurs into quarter-finals|
|Oblak return boosts Atletico ahead of Leverkusen trip|
|Gabigol and Inter ready to feast on success after late winner|
|Bologna 0 Inter 1: Gabigol gets belated lift-off in Serie A|
|Still no Mascherano or Arda for Barcelona|
|Bielsa appointed Lille boss from next season|
|Janssen determined to make the grade at Tottenham|
|Stones missing Kompany influence at Manchester City - Ferdinand|
|Central Coast Mariners 0 Melbourne Victory 3: Muscat´s men cruise to win|
|David Villa sent off after video replay|
|Favre not blaming Balotelli for latest red card|
|´It is my future at stake´ – Isco could leave Real Madrid|
|Smalling desperate for Ibrahimovic stay|
|´He will be here for sure´ - Mourinho rules out Shaw exit|
|Wenger not ready for retirement, wants Arsenal stay|
|Pogba will soon look cheap, claims Manchester United boss Mourinho|
|Casilla defends under-fire Navas|
|Isco ´happy and committed´ at Real Madrid – Zidane|