SLOUGH Town joint-manager Neil Baker is delighted with the response Ben Harris gave after his controversial red card at Torquay United on Saturday, writes Rob Stevens.

Harris, 28, was cautioned for a late challenge and then shown a straight red by referee Jason Richardson, who decided he had made an obscene gesture toward Torquay supporters just before half-time.

Harris received criticism on social media after the Rebels were beaten 4-0 at Plainmoor, but he took it on the chin and starred as a lone striker in the goalless draw with Bath City at Arbour Park on Tuesday.

Baker told the Observer: "I spoke with the referee on Monday and he admitted Ben didn't use the gesture he was sent off for, but unfortunately we won't win the appeal because it was classed as foul and abusive language.

"The way the system is these days you've literally got no chance of winning the appeal so unfortunately Ben will be suspended for two games, but he will learn from it.

"He knows he made a mistake last weekend and it cost the side, but we're a team and people make mistakes so we just have to get on with it.

"Ben got a lot of stick on Twitter and Facebook, plus a few other places, but he's got broad shoulders and was brilliant against Bath in midweek. He worked his soaks off up front on his own and done really well.

"I'm really pleased with his reaction because there were a lot of people that were really putting him down."

Baker acknowledged the red card completely changed the game as Torquay went on to register their 10th straight league thanks to second-half goals from Ben Wynter, Jake Andrews, substitute Ruairi Keating and captain Asa Hall.

Slough responded to draw 0-0 with promotion-chasing Bath in midweek and Baker is happy with the progress the Rebels are making in the National League South this season.

He said: "We showed in midweek that we can grind out points and keep clean sheets. We've done that a number of times this season, so for that reason we were disappointed to go down to 10 men on Saturday.

"The hardest part then is you've only got the four in midfield and one up top, so the ball just keeps on coming back and it's difficult to get out.

"We took that on the chin last weekend and I'm quite happy to say that we looked at these three games (including Chelmsford City this Saturday) and thought if we could get four points then we would be absolutely delighted.

"We've got a point and that gives us an option to get four, but we've got a really tough opponent in Chelmsford and it's another difficult game."

The Rebels welcome fourth-placed Chelmsford to Arbour Park (3pm) still looking for their first win and goal in the New Year.

Slough last found the back of the net in the win at Dulwich Hamlet on December 29th and have now gone 347 minutes without scoring.

Their task does not get any easier without the suspended Harris and last season's top scorer James Dobson, who is expected to complete his transfer to a club in the National League on Monday.

Baker commented: "We've got to realise where we are and, yes we will have to improve going forward at times, but it might not be this season. It might have to be next season."

The Rebels turn their attention to the Berks & Bucks Senior Cup and a quarter-final tie away at Hungerford Town next Tuesday (7.45pm).