CHAMPIONSHIP strugglers Dunfermline have been handed a welcome boost after they succeeded in overturning Michael Moffat’s red card from the weekend defeat to Hibs.
The striker was sent-off in injury-time following a tackle from behind on Darren McGregor, with the challenge sparking an ugly scuffle involving players from both sides.
However, on reviewing footage, the Pars were convinced referee Alan Muir’s dismissal had been wrong and launched an appeal with the SFA.
Their confidence proved correct after the governing body reduced the red card to a yellow, freeing Moffat to play in Saturday’s crucial clash with Dumbarton as the Fifers chase just a third league win of the campaign.
The East End Park outfit currently sit third-bottom and only a point ahead of tomorrow’s opponents and just three above basement side St Mirren.
Manager Allan Johnston said: “Moff’s red card has been rescinded, so it’s good to see a bit of common sense.
“It was never a sending off. I don’t know if it was even a booking, to be fair, but it’s been downgraded to a yellow and I think we’ve got to accept that.
“It never changed the game, though, and the second-half wasn’t good enough, we’re all well aware of that, especially after such a good first-half.”
There was further good news for Dunfermline when talismanic winger Joe Cardle returned to training.
The 29-year-old has missed the defeats to Falkirk and Hibs because of a knee problem but could return to the side at Dumbarton.
And former Rangers striker Nicky Clark, who was sidelined for the Hibs defeat through injury, is also back in training ahead of the trip west.
Johnston added: “Nicky was back training on Tuesday, so it’s good to have him back.
“Joe Cardle trained on Thursday for the first time in a while as well, which was good.
“Joe hyperextended his knee shooting but it’s settled down.
“Obviously he’s a big player for us. The last time we played against Dumbarton he scored a hat-trick.
“He’s a big player who can score goals from the wider positions, so you definitely miss his quality if he’s not involved.
“We’ll see how he reacts to training and see about Saturday.
“It’s good that we’re starting to get players back.”