A furious Justin Edinburgh described Joe Widdowson’s dismissal as “completely wrong” after 10-man Leyton Orient played out a 0-0 draw with Hartlepool United this afternoon.

The left-back was sent off by referee Adrian Quelch for a tackle on Hartlepool’s Matthew Woods shortly after the break, meaning the O’s had to play the majority of the second half with ten men.

A number of Hartlepool players surrounded the referee following Widdowson’s tackle, but Quelch did take time to consult his linesman before producing the red card.

It means that the O’s will now be without Widdowson, who has been one of Orient’s most consistent performers this season, for three games although Edinburgh did confirm that he would be appealing the decision.

Asked about the left-back’s red card, Edinburgh said: “It’s completely wrong. Joe’s in control, his feet never leave the ground. It’s a strong challenge, but I don’t know where the rules say you can’t tackle strongly.

“There’s no malice or recklessness. He’s always in control. I’ve viewed it many times and slowed it right down and I’d be very surprised (if it’s not rescinded). But, as you know, I won’t be sitting in that appeal panel. But if anyone has played the game, then it will be rescinded.”

Despite that red-card, the O’s showed plenty of character to stay in the game and if anything, they were by far the better team in the second half.

Jobi McAnuff, Marvin Ekpiteta and James Alabi all came close to breaking the deadlock for the O’s, but the golden chance fell to James Brophy, who was played through by Craig Clay, but his effort went wide of the post with just goalkeeper Scott Loach to beat.

Edinburgh’s side defended admirably throughout and Dean Brill’s only real save of note came in second half stoppage time, when he got down low to deny Hartlepool substitute Marcus Dinanga’s low drive from distance.

Ekpiteta and Josh Coulson dealt with everything that was thrown at them at the back, meanwhile in midfield, Craig Clay was particularly impressive, having won back possession on numerous occasions throughout the afternoon.

Edinburgh was proud of the effort of his players following their spirited display in front of over 6500 fans at the Breyer Group Stadium, but was left wondering what could have been due to the O’s missed chances.

He said: “I’m very proud of the performance and the manner that we played. Even with 11 men, I thought we played well at times against a team that have again come to frustrate us.

“I thought today was a better performance than Sutton. Even when we went down to 10 men, we still looked like the team that was going to win the game.

“I thought we marshalled it and stayed brave. We kept two up top and went to three at the back. We were brave in that sense and I think our football showed that. Second half, maybe Brophy or Alabi, or a cross from Koroma, would have been the gloss for us to finish off and win the game.”