FREE-FALLING Wrexham hit the deck with another resounding thud at Oldham, where they had skipper Brian Carey sent off 10 minutes into the second half.
Carey's straight red card means he will miss three games. He was sent off by Blackpool referee Mark Cowburn, who sent off two Wrexham players during the home game against Colchester United on August 25.
This time he dismissed Carey for what he saw as a professional foul. Carey clearly tugged Stuart Balmer - denying him a goal-scoring opportunity - so the referee sent him off and also awarded Oldham a penalty from which they scored.
Wrexham manager Denis Smith was not there to see it because he was ill, but his right-hand-man Kevin Russell said, "I'm very disappointed because we should have got something out of the game.
"In the first half we played very well, but we've not had that little bit of luck that you need sometimes to win matches".
Wrexham didn't need luck in the first half as they tore Latics to pieces.
Andy Morrell gave them a deserved 12th-minute lead with the help of a slight deflection, but the Red Dragons were on fire for most of the opening 45 minutes.
Jim Whitley's cross gave Morrell his chance to score his first goal for almost a year but Wrexham again paid for letting the team off the hook.
Oldham hardly threatened Kristian Rogers in Wrexham's goal but Paul Murray conjured up an equaliser on the stroke of half-time after some poor defending.
That set it up nicely for a winner-take-all second half but then came that double whammy for Wrexham.
Carey, who had been booked earlier, was clearly upset that the referee showed him a straight red card instead of a second yellow
That means he faces an automatic three-match ban when Wrexham need him most in the run-in to avoid relegation.
There was little doubt about the penalty and John Sheridan stuck it past Rogers with commendable poise amid the hubbub.
Ten-man Wrexham gave it a whirl before finally going under to yet another goal scored against them by Carlo Corazzin. He scored four against Wrexham last season.
And made it 3-1 in stoppage time to clinch the points.
But it was another day of frustration for Wrexham, who were by far the better side in the first half.
The sending-off swung it against them but that's how it goes when you're down on your luck.