Manager Phil Brown revealed his frustration at referee Phil Gibbs after Cardiff's 1-0 win at Deepdale ensured Preston's relegation from the npower Championship.
Brown felt Gibbs should have dismissed Bluebirds defender Jlloyd Samuel for a heavy challenge on Iain Hume which led to the striker being forced off in the 34th minute.
Gibbs also denied Brown's men at least one penalty as Peter Whittingham's sixth-minute strike sent North End tumbling into the third tier for the first time since 2000.
And Brown said: "I thought it was a leg-breaking challenge on Hume. The lad has got a 12-inch scar from his knee down to his ankle and it was a red card for me.
"A penalty decision would have changed the course of the game and I just don't know what referees are seeing.
"They seem to be courting the glamour more than ever and the more controversial they are the better they are. It's absolute rubbish."