Sutton United boss Paul Doswell revealed that the referee admitted to two mistakes that could have more than doubled the final score against Gosport Borough on Tuesday night.
Goals either side of half time from Gavin McCallum and Jamie Taylor meant United, in third, kept in touch with Skrill South leaders Eastleigh and second-placed Bromley, who both also won.
However, Gosport should have been reduced to 10 men within 20 minutes when Jamie Brown hauled down Taylor as the last man, and they should have had a penalty for handball moments later.
Doswell said: “I was up in the gantry and I could see it was a clear penalty for handball, it was a yard inside the box.
“And how the lad was not sent off for wrestling [Jamie] Taylor to ground when he was going to score, I don’t know.
“The ref admitted to two errors when he came off at half-time, which does not help us. Ultimately you don’t want people sent off, but it was frustrating.”
McCallum opened the scoring on 41 minutes, and when Taylor doubled the advantage moments into the second half, the game was over as a contest as Gosport turned their attentions to an FA Trophy final date at Wembley on Sunday.
Doswell said: “The second goal killed the game, and after that it was disappointing for the supporters – but in the end, it was job done.
“We felt we dropped our standards in the last half an hour, we were not getting the ball in the box and kept going backwards when we should have been going forward.”
“We should have pushed on a bit more, and we have no reason for being tired. My problem is taking that slovenly approach into Saturday at Dorchester.”
He added: “It did give us a chance to rest some legs. Craig Dundas has played virtually every minute and he does have a sore knee, Damien [Scannell] needed some time out and Jamie [Taylor] has had a sore hip and groin.”
Doswell will not be at Saturday’s clash in Dorset, which sees United take on the bottom side, but he will be keeping in touch from the beach in Phuket.
He said: “We have two coach loads of fans going to Dorchester, and we’re laying on breakfast for the players and doing everything right.
“I’ll be on holiday, but I shall be keeping in touch, you can rest assured.”