Geoff Horsfield thinks Port Vale's Marc Richards was a victim of over-reaction from Burton players after Monday's red card.
The striker received his second booking for a challenge on Brewers defender Nathan Stanton in Vale's 2-1 win and caretaker-manager Horsfield, after reviewing the video footage of the incident, believes the Burton players did their best to influence the referee's decision.
"I've reviewed the incident on the match DVD and Rico's gone up for the ball and not even looked at Stanton," he told the Sentinel.
"Rico's dropped down on Stanton's foot when he came down from the challenge which is unfortunate. But I think their players surrounding the referee has got Marc sent off.
"Rico's a massive loss for us because he's one of our major players - he's a goalscorer who holds the ball up well and brings other people into play."