Walton Casuals keeper Chico Ramos' hamstring injury not only cost his side three points on Saturday, according to boss Mick Sullivan, but it seems it also cost the manager his job.
Sullivan and assistant Peter Thomas were sacked last night after Saturday's 6-6 draw with Merstham at Waterside Drive.
Chairman Tony Gale thanked the former Leatherhead manager - who won promotion from the Ryman Division One South with the Tanners in 2011 - for his efforts at the club over the last twelve months.
He said: "It was a tough call as Mick was the hardest working manager I have known at the club, but it's a results business and we are currently siting bottom of the league."
The Stags are currently at the foot of the Ryman Division One South table, but would have been clear of the drop zone if they could have held a five-goal lead last weekend.
Sullivan’s new-look side led 6-1 at half-time – through goals from Blake Goodman, Nana Badu, Danny Fernandez, Craig Lewington, Sam Robinson and Sol Patterson-Bohner – but drew 6-6 with Merstham.
“It is a football cliche, but when you are down at the bottom nothing goes your way,” he said.
“The key moment was when Chico Ramos was injured in the build up to their first goal. Not only did he make a mistake but he had to go off too.
“We had to replace him with one of our best outfield players, Danny Fernandez.
"I have been struggling to get a good enough keeper to sit on the bench all season and we didn’t have a replacement.
“They got a second goal back with 25 minutes left and panic set in. We had no leaders to see us over the line and I think Chico would have made a difference.
"The players take responsibility when they cross the whiteline, but I take full responsibility for the result.”
Sullivan has rebuilt his side since watching them slip to the foot of the table last month and the manager had seen signs of improvement.
“We are a much better team than we were. There is no-one in this league to have outclassed us,” he added.
"I've had to rebuild the side in the season, which isn't easy and we are starting to look more solid."
First-team coach Danny Carroll will take the team to Maidstone United tomorrow.