DARLINGTON manager David Hodgson believes Leyton Orient midfielder David Hunt should have been dismissed for his elbow on Neil Maddison at the weekend.

Maddison sustained a suspected fractured cheekbone after he was hit by Hunt in the 43rd minute. The Os player earned a yellow card from referee Lee Probert.

However, Hodgson believes Hunt should have received his marching orders for the sickening challenge.

"It was horrendous and I can't believe their lad has actually stayed on the field after it," fumed Hodgson.

"It was right in front of us and the referee, who felt it only warranted a yellow card. That to me is an absolute joke. He looks like the elephant man after that.

"He took one hell of a whack, but refused to come off, which says everything about Maddo. I only wish there were more players in the squad with his kind of determination."

Hodgson is already facing the prospect of being without Alun Armstrong, Clyde Wijnhard and Neil Wainwright through suspension for Saturday's visit of Boston.

The Quakers boss has not given up hope of landing Matty Appleby, although admits he may have to be patient following the departure of Oldham boss Brian Talbot last week.

Hodgson was close to completing a deal for the former Quakers star, before Talbot left Boundary Park by mutual consent on Thursday.

Now, Appleby is re-assessing his options after Tony Philliskirk was placed in temporary charge. Former Rotherham boss Ronnie Moore is expected to take over.

"I've spoken to Matty since Brian Talbot left and he is still keen on joining us," revealed Hodgson. "We can't do anything yet, while Oldham look for a new manager, but we are still hoping to sort something out."

Sunderland midfielder Jonjo Dickman links up with his new team-mates this morning after agreeing to join the club until the end of the season. Former Middlesbrough winger Keith Gilroy will also train today and is expected to pen a deal for the remainder of the campaign.

Jamaica international Damion Stewart will complete a triple batch of signings when he joins on Wednesday.