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Stanley 0 Stevenage 0

7 May 2016

Accrington Stanley had to settle for a place in the play-offs after their goalless draw with Stevenage.

The Reds hit the woodwork three times but, with Oxford and Bristol Rovers winning, Stanley dropped to fourth and will now face AFC Wimbledon in the play-off semi finals.

It was Stevenage who spoilt Stanley's promotion chances in 2011 and it was agony again for the Reds in front of a bumper crowd of 4386 – the highest at the Wham Stadium.

Stanley had the early chances with Josh Windass, Tariq Fosu and Brad Halliday all firing wide from distance.

It was an even game with Stevenage looking to spoil the party and Adam Marriott and Greg Luer both created opportunities although neither tested keeper Ross Etheridge.

Billy Kee headed over for Stanley from Piero Mingoia's cross in a cagey game.

The closest either side came in the opening half was Tom Conlon's 35th minute free kick for the visitors which skimmed the crossbar.

Stanley enjoyed a spell of pressure before half-time but didn't test goalie Jamie Jones.

The second half continued in the same vein with Reading winger Fosu firing well wide and Marriott's effort was easy for Etheridge.

A great move by Stanley saw Mingoia play in a superb ball which Brad Halliday just couldn't connect with and it was his last action as Scott Brown came on in the 58th minute to replace him.

Windass rifled a shot wide on 64 minutes after good build up play by Fosu and Kee and Fosu had a shot collected at the second attempt by keeper Jones.

It was Fosu's last action on 74 minutes as Shay McCartan replaced him and McCartan's first action was to rattle the crossbar with a fierce strike from around 10 yards out.

And the woodwork again denied Stanley when a Matty Pearson header looped against the crossbar with just eight minutes remaining.

Terry Gornell came on for the final seven minutes and it was more agony for the Reds as McCartan leapt highest to a cross but once again the crossbar denied Stanley.

Gornell headed wide in the dying seconds but for the first time this season, Stanley couldn't score at home and will now battle in the ply-offs.

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