YORK City boss Billy McEwan labelled Conference football a game for "tarts" after watching his ten-man team lose their unbeaten record at Crawley Town.

The Minstermen were a man light after goalkeeper Tom Evans' 16th-minute sending off and went on to lose 3-0 at Broadfield Stadium - the first time the club have conceded three goals in a league fixture since a 4-0 defeat at Canvey Island in April 2005.

McEwan had few complaints over referee Darren Sheldrake's decision to dismiss Evans but was furious that Neal Bishop had a goal disallowed for an alleged push on home defender Scott Hiley.

Had it stood, the goal would have drawn the visitors level on 42 minutes but, instead, they were sunk by two further second-half efforts from Crawley.

McEwan was also left unimpressed with the West Moseley official's failure to award his side a penalty when Clayton Donaldson appeared to be tripped late in the game.

The City boss said: "I don't know why we had a goal disallowed. I don't know where the push was but it seems you can't touch anyone.

"Physical contact isn't allowed ... it's a game for tarts, not for men. You can't even breathe on people without it being a foul and, if you shout from the touchline or the fans shout, the referee gives you a decision.

"We also had a blatant penalty on Donaldson not given. Everybody in the ground could see it was a penalty and some of his decisions were astounding really but that's a common thing at this level.

"You always hear people complaining about decisions but what can you do. People will say I'm making excuses but I'm just stating facts."

McEwan did not offer any excuses, however, for the standard of his side's defending or the incident that led to Evans' dismissal. The former Scunthorpe keeper dragged on-loan midfielder Dannie Bulman to the floor outside his penalty area after a mix-up with centre-back David McGurk.

He said: "The ball should never have been passed back in the first place because I had told the players that the grass was long. Football is a forward game and, if you play it back or sideways, that's negative.

"But, even at 1-0, I thought we could win the game. I could have been negative and gone 4-4-1 but we went for it and left our two strikers up there. The effort and commitment from ten men was superb but we gave them schoolboy goals on a plate because some of our defending was poor.

"We made wrong decisions at vital times. The first goal the player got round the side of our defender, the second goal our goalkeeper parried the ball and the last one was just poor. We made Jake Edwards look like Maradona."

Evans' red card saw left-winger Martyn Woolford replaced after just 16 minutes of his full debut with teenage goalkeeper Arran Reid given his first taste of senior action.

Home striker Edwards scored one goal and set up others for Bulman and Lee Blackburn as Reid was beaten three times.