Chris Wilder was sent to the stands as a depleted Sheffield United suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Norwich City.
With United trailing to Yanic Wildschut’s first-half goal, Wilder - frustrated with the visitors’ time-wasting and gamesmanship - entered the opposition technical area and kicked the ball back into play.
That resulted in him being sent to the stands.
Wilder said: “There were some time-wasting issues that are ridiculous. Referees have to do something about it. It breaks the flow of the game up when you’re in the ascendancy.
“I went in their technical area, that was the problem. Bit of a frustration, having five centre forwards out.
“I thought my team were outstanding for a new team in the division. I thought we deserved something from the game.
“They’ve taken the three points but there’s a lot of pride that’s been on show in the shirt today and I think that was recognised by the supporters
“I can accept losing, I just can’t accept when players hide or don’t take responsibility. Those players haven’t done that today, they’ve given it a good go.
“We moved the ball about the pitch ever so well today. We were up against it but I thought we showed all the qualities I’d expect us to show.”
With James Hanson and Caolan Lavery already sidelined, Clayton Donaldon, Billy Sharp and Leon Clarke were also ruled out meaning a rare start for Ched Evans in attack.
David Brooks was also given a starting spot, as boss Wilder made five changes from midweek.
United had the first chance of the match, but Evans’s header failed to trouble the Norwich keeper Gunn.
Brooks was then denied one-on-one, but the Blades were living dangerously at the back, gifting possession in their own half.
And the Canaries went in front on 23 minutes, Yanic Wildschut drilling the ball beyond Jamal Blackman.
Paul Coutts and Mark Duffy both had chances for United, but the hosts lacked a clinical edge in the last third to capitalise on some decent passing football.
The Blades were playing some neat attacking play, as they looked for an equaliser in the second half, but once more were lacking an end result.
Duffy’s free-kick just evaded the head of Evans, while Brooks looked dangerous in possession.
Wilder was sent to the stands, by the referee, as frustrations boiled over heading into the final quarter.
United sent on Samir Carruthers and Nathan Thomas, but chances were now at a premium as Norwich defended deep,
Not even six minutes of stoppage time could produce an equaliser, Brooks coming closest, but the youngster blasted over the bar.