Rosebud rue red card
Rosebud was eliminated from the cup after going down 3-0 to local Newcastle rivals Edgeworth on Sunday.
The Eagles have joined fellow Newcastle club Broadmeadow Magic as the two Northern NSW sides to qualify for the final 32 of the cup.
Adamstown defeated Valentine FC 4-0 on Saturday for the right to face Edgeworth the next day at Speers Point.
But Rosebud went behind early against Edgeworth, after a goal to Brenton Olzomer, and then had Gillespie red-carded just before half-time.
Goals to Justin Tannock and a second to Olzomer sealed the victory in the second half.
Law told FourFourTwo that the defender should not have been given his marching orders.
“It was never a red card on two accounts,” he said.
“Alex was not the last man and secondly it should never have got to Alex having to make a tackle as the lad was five meters offside anyway. It’s a tough job being a ref and I have the greatest respect for all refs, but that decision was huge and had a massive impact on the end result.”
Law said it was incredibly tough to play the final two FFA Cup qualifiers back-to-back over the weekend.
“Especially losing three players from the team on the Saturday and of course losing Garry Kenneth was always going to be difficult,” he said.
“The boys performed well against a very good Valentine team, we had to fight hard in the first half but our fitness levels and quality showed through in the second half.
“Edgeworth I think had the benefit of playing a mixed squad on the Saturday given their opposition but we had to play our first-grade team on both days and the tired legs we had clearly showed in the second half.
“But fair play to Edgy, as I thought they performed very well for the entire 90 minutes and I wish them and Broadmeadow Magic all the best as they go on to represent our region.”
Magic accounted for West Wallend 13-0 to book their spot in the round of 32.
Broadmeadow reached that stage last year, when they were knocked out by Brisbane Strikers, while Edgeworth are through to the final 32 for the first time.