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MEET THE OPPONENTS: Accrington Stanley

Taking a look at one of the teams we face this season

7 August 2017

The season is now under way as we continue to cast an eye over this season’s opponents.

Accrington Stanley are next on the hit list.

Nicknames: Stanley, Accy

Club Colours: Red & White

Who are they?

Accrington Stanley were originally formed in 1891 and played in the Football League from 1921 until 1962. They then spent four years playing in the Lancashire Combination league, before folding in 1966.

The club that wouldn't die

The club was revived by Stanley Wotherington two years later and Stanley began to climb the non-league pyramid. They reached the Conference in 2003 before winning the league in 2005/06.

Accy have spent the eleven years since competing in the fourth tier, with the occasional play-off appearance sparking optimism. Under the stewardship of John Coleman, they have cemented themselves as a solid Football League club.

Did You Know?

+ The club’s home, The Crown Ground, is a reference to the nearby Crown Pub.

+ With a capacity of 5,057, the Crown Ground is the smallest stadium in the Football League.

+ Stanley went 15 League Two games unbeaten last season, a league record which they shared with United.

Crown Ground

How did they get on last season?

After a fairly poor start to the campaign, Stanley kicked-on in the New Year and were many people’s outside tips for the play-offs after a fine run of form which saw them climb up the table. They ultimately finished 13th, only five points off the play-off places.

Who’s in charge?

John Coleman is the man in charge at Accrington Stanley, as he has been since 2012. After a long playing career in non-league, Coleman started his managerial career at Ashton United in 1997. He joined Stanley two years later and spent over twelve years at the Crown Ground. In that time, he led Accy to three promotions as champions and led the side into the Football League.

John Coleman

He left for Rochdale in 2012 but was sacked in January 2013. Brief spells managing Southport and Sligo Rovers followed before he was re-appointed at Accrington in 2014.

How has their summer transfer business looked?

There have been several moves in both directions at the Crown Ground, with some of Stanley’s promising stars snapped up. Attacker Shay McCartan moved to Bradford for a six-figure fee with Brayden Shaw and Terry Gornell also departing.

Terry Gornell

New signings have come in the form of Southport midfielder Liam Nolan, Portuguese winger Erico Sousa and ex-Rangers man Mekhi McLeod. Former loanee Jonny Edwards has also signed, rejoining from Hull City, while free agent Ben Richards-Everton has also put pen to paper.

They’ve Played For Both

Current United midfielder Luke Joyce spent a memorable six-year stint at the Crown Ground either side of two spells at Brunton Park. Joyce made just shy of 250 appearances for Stanley, in which time he also captained the side during their early years in the Football League. Since rejoining United two years ago, Joyce has made over 50 appearances and scored one memorable goal.

Bastien Hery

Winger John O’Sullivan also spent time at Stanley, in which time his lively performances caught the eye of many admirers. Bastien Hery made the move from Brunton Park to Accrington last year, but left Stanley midway through the season.

Memorable Meeting - Accrington 1-3 Carlisle (2 September 2014)

We’ve only met Stanley ten times, and our biggest margin of victory came in this Football League Trophy clash back in 2014. Marcus Carver handed Stanley the lead before Antony Sweeney leveled the scores just three minutes later. Kyle Dempsey and Billy Paynter then bagged after the break to seal progression to the second roun

When Did We Last Meet?

Our last meeting came in January of this year as we played out a cagey draw at the Crown Ground. The Blues took the lead through an Omar Beckles own-goal, but Shay McCartan’s fine free-kick just a minute later ensured the spoils were shared.

When Do We Meet?

We make the trip to the Crown Ground on 9 September, while Stanley travel to Brunton Park on Boxing Day in the first of our festive fixtures.


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