The Thistle midfielder’s 74th minute dismissal for an innocuous-looking foul that earned him a second yellow came with the Firhill side 1-0 ahead in a contest between the Championship’s bottom two clubs. Within two minutes, an equaliser from Ray McKinnon’s men ensured Thistle remain at the foot of the second tier.
There has been a spate of high-profile incidents with referees and Caldwell was in no doubt that Dallas’s actions cost him what would only have been a second win in 13 games in charge. “I’m not saying they [referees] can be perfect. The way they go about it after, the arrogance they show, isn’t great,” Caldwell said. “It needs to improve. We need to make it better because this is people’s livelihoods at stake.
“We got a brilliant goal and then should have gone on and won the game but for another crazy decision. Every week there are bad decisions in every game we play in. I felt he [Dallas] got sucked in. They came to frustrate and tackle and their bench erupted every time, and I’ve seen this before when the aggressors get away with things and every little foul is a yellow card for us.
“I don’t understand how every foul we make is a yellow card, yet they get away with one, two, three fouls. I think he got sucked in today. I had a quiet word with the referee after the game, but I can’t say what he said. It’s private.” There were also unconfirmed reports of coin-throwing from the away end.