|A week of mixed emotions for Arbroath manager Dick Campbell who has been handed a seven-game ban and at the same time been named League One Manager of the Month for January after Arbroath took ten points out of a possible 12. Campbell has been banned for disagreeing with a penalty decision not given in Arbroath's favour during a 4-1 Scottish Cup loss to Ayr last month. Referee Mike Roncone had to deal with Campbell who ran onto the pitch to express his disappointment at the missed decision on 20 January. The veteran manager continued his protest as he was sent to the stands. Campbell will serve a five-game suspension immediately, with two games suspended until the end of the season.
Campbell said: "I have never seen a more blatant penalty in my life - if it's not a penalty he has to book the player for diving. Every Ayr United supporter saw it. I hope the supervisor questions the referee's performance - the decisions he made today put us out of the cup and made a major impact on the game. There is no word in the English dictionary to describe why it's not a penalty."
The Red Lichties kicked off 2018 with a 1-0 win over local rivals Forfar Athletic then beat title-chasing Ayr United 2-1 at Somerset Park. Queen's Park were beaten by the same score at Gayfield and the month ended with a 0-0 draw at Airdrieonians. Arbroath are third in the table going into Saturday's trip to Stranraer and are seeking a second successive promotion after winning the Ladbrokes League 2 title in 2016/17.
Ger Harley (ger@scottishfitba net)
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