DAVID Flitcroft claims justice was done by the removal of a three-match ban for James Dunne after offering his player a contrite apology in the wake of his red card in last Tuesday’s 2-1 home defeat by Coventry City.

Town launched an appeal against the punishment meted out against the midfielder for apparent violent conduct during the second half of the midweek reverse by the Sky Blues, claiming wrongful dismissal and supplying video evidence to back up their case.

An FA panel agreed with the club’s view, freeing Dunne to feature against his former club Cambridge in Saturday’s 2-0 win at the Energy Check County Ground.

Flitcroft admitted he himself had been guilty of jumping to conclusions surrounding Dunne’s original dismissal in the immediate aftermath of the loss, offering the 28 year old an apology in a Thursday meeting having reviewed the evidence.

“On Thursday I apologised to Dunney first for my reaction after the game,’’ said the Town boss.

“It’s hard to take emotion away sometimes. Football is a passionate game and emotion is a massive part of football or any sport.

“To be honest, I apologised to James. After the (Coventry) game, I was emotional and I told him he’s let the club down and let everyone down.

“I’m disappointed with myself after the game, reflected on it in the morning, looked at it and there was just an injustice.

“The injustice is that he got done for violent conduct, so we went to the FA. (We) said and (we) showed (them it) was not violent conduct, he was pushing someone away.

“We worked really hard behind the scenes, our analysts and the staff at the club.”

Flitcroft was delighted to have his player back in tow as they bounced back from their Coventry disappointment to put the U’s to the sword, but regrets the pivotal midweek moment he believes cost his side the chance of emerging with something from that game.

“What amazed me was the referee was only three yards away and he didn’t see violent conduct, but yet 30 yards away from a completely different angle the linesman has got it,’’ added the Town chief.

“It quite clearly showed in the report that the linesman gave the call, not the referee.

“What I do feel is great is they have listened. It went to the appeal and it got rectified and you know there is justice out there at times.

“I’d never waste energy and time that could turn three matches into five. It (the appeal) was never frivolous and we got it rescinded which is fantastic because it would have cost James in his pocket.

“It probably shows the need for technology because it was so obvious. If they get that right in the stand, we don’t lose James in the game.

“People don’t want 10-v-11. We want a competitive game, 11-v-11.

“We’ve got the player back from three games (ban), which is good but it doesn’t get you the Coventry result back.’’