Abu Ogogo: Shrewsbury Town boss Paul Hurst unhappy over captain's suspension

Shrewsbury's Abu Ogogo (on top) and Northampton's John-Joe O'Toole were both sent off following their 65th-minute confrontation at Sixfields
Abu Ogogo (on top) and Northampton's John-Joe O'Toole were sent off following their 65th-minute Sixfields confrontation

Shrewsbury manager Paul Hurst has expressed his sympathy for captain Abu Ogogo over the severity of the Town midfielder's four-match suspension.

What should have been a three-game ban, for fighting with Northampton's John-Joe O'Toole, became four matches as it was Ogogo's second red of the season.

Ogogo is out of league action until 17 April, yet is crucially free to play in Town's EFL Trophy final on 8 April.

"I found it a very strange situation," Hurst told BBC Radio Shropshire.

"It's difficult, because you can't blame the officials.

"Ultimately there are two people grappling, wrestling, whatever you want to call it, on the floor.

"I understand that's not the image we want to portray, myself or the FA.

"But, if I walked into someone's office and decided to go and grab hold of them, I think after a little while they'll react. That's kind of my only problem with it.

"I could intentionally get one of our lads go and do that to a star player of another team. Then what's he going to do? He's probably going to react and get sent off.

"When I think back to his sending off at Rotherham, I'm not convinced about that one either. One game on that day would've been more than sufficient. So then to spark this into four games does seem harsh."

Will Town stop again without Ogogo?

Starting at home to Wimbledon on Saturday, Shrewsbury's main concern now is that they do not buckle like they did when they lost both the two league games they played without Ogogo when he was first banned back in the autumn.

He will also miss the away trips to Rochdale and Bradford City and the home game in between against Karl Robinson's Oxford United. But he is free to play in the EFL Trophy final at Wembley, as the competition is now governed under separate suspension laws following the introduction of under-21 sides.

Hurst says simply: "It's there. We've just now got to move on from it and concentrate."

To add to his concerns, against the struggling Dons, Hurst will also again be without Ogogo's fellow midfielder Ben Godfrey, who missed the midweek Northampton game with a hamstring problem.

Both Godfrey and full-back James Bolton (ankle ligaments) face a race to be fit in time for Wembley.

Paul Hurst was talking to BBC Radio Shropshire's Mark Elliott

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