Notts County manager Neal Ardley accused Carlisle’s Jamie Devitt of making a “disgraceful” challenge on one of his players in Tuesday’s game at Brunton Park.

Ardley claimed the Blues midfielder should have been sent off for his foul on County’s Jim O’Brien.

The challenge - for which Devitt was booked - came late in the game as Carlisle fell to a 3-1 defeat against the Meadow Lane strugglers.

Manager Ardley said O’Brien could now be forced to miss games as a result of his resulting calf injury.

“I feel for Jim and we could lose him now,” said Ardley, speaking in the Nottingham Post.

“The challenge on him was a disgrace and it was a sending off.

“He [O’Brien] has got a three inch gash down his calf, and it’s deep, seriously deep.

“It was the 90th minute and to lose him to a really, rash, horrible challenge was poor.”

Devitt has only recently returned from a three-match ban following his dismissal at Crewe.

United declined to comment in response to Ardley’s remarks.

Ardley, meanwhile, said his team handled Tuesday’s rough conditions better than Carlisle.

The game was played in heavy wind and rain as Storm Gareth took its toll on Brunton Park.

Ardley, whose side are now four points adrift of safety after moving off the bottom of the League Two table, said: “We worked hard on how we were going to play but the conditions were brutal.

“I don’t think I’ve ever managed a team in weather like it.

“We played well with the wind and we caused them lots of problems.

“We knew that one goal might not be enough, so we had to play really well against the wind.

“We did that better than they did.”

Ardley conceded the second half had some anxious spells for his side after Hallam Hope’s bizarre goal when he stole the ball from unsuspecting Notts keeper Ryan Schofield.

That brought it back to 2-1 after Kane Hemmings' double.

Lewis Alessandra then wrapped up victory for the Magpies in stoppage time.

“It gets a bit nervy when they score, and it was tough on Schoey whose handling in those conditions was superb,” the Notts boss said.

“It was tough to take, but to dig in and respond like we did was fantastic.

“It shows the character they can produce, we just need to do it more often now.”