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INTERVIEW: We need to grasp this opportunity says Coleman

Reds need another strong performance as relegation battle continues

13 April 2023


INTERVIEW: We need to grasp this opportunity says Coleman

Reds need another strong performance as relegation battle continues

13 April 2023

John Coleman says Accrington Stanley have to show the performance and spirit they displayed in their last home game if they are to secure a vital win over Fleetwood Town.

Stanley celebrated a 3-0 victory over Port Vale on Good Friday at the Wham Stadium and, while they remain in the relegation places, three points on Saturday could see them out of the bottom four.

With six games to go, Coleman says his side needs at least three wins and that starts with Fleetwood who are safe in 15th place in the table but are without a win in three games.

Coleman said: “We have this propensity this season of going up and down with performances and we have got to start putting back-to-back performances together with two huge home games coming up now.

“You have got to deal with the pressure and expectancy and you need a little bit of luck. We have to find a way to get on the front foot, attack teams and hopefully score goals.

“We are at the stage now where we can’t accept defeats.

“Three wins out of six is a tall order but we have to believe we can do it. Our performances over the season possibly haven’t been anywhere near where we want them to be but we have had big performances in certain games and we just have to try and put them together now.

“Winning breeds confidence, it gets the fans’ tails up and we haven’t had many good Saturday performances at home this season.

“We have to start making this ground a fortress, it felt like it on Friday and we have got to try and replicate that atmosphere.

“You have got to give the fans something to be enthused about, fans will always recognise and appreciate hard work and if you do that from the start, you put teams on the back foot.

“You have to try and play the game in the other team’s half which gets the fans up and in turn gets the players up. We have to try and feed off each other and create our own spirit on the pitch.

“We have got an opportunity we have got to try and grasp. We have to fight for everything - every second ball, every throw-in, corner, free-kick, challenge, every shot we make and every block we make.

“This game is getting into realms of when we played Macclesfield here when we had just got into the league and we knew we couldn’t afford not to win and we are getting into those realms.”

With Fleetwood safe on 50 points, Coleman knows not to under-estimate them.

“They beat us 3-0 earlier in the season, we just shaded the first half and I was bitterly disappointed with how we came out the second half, we were terrible.

“They have signed good players, they have a good squad, a manager who is on the forward trajectory, and it’s going to be tough but we know we can compete.

“We played Plymouth here and for big periods we were the better team with ten men and they were top of the league at the time. We did the same to Portsmouth with ten men.

“We know we can compete at home and we have to turn competing into winning, that’s the currency we need.”

He continued: “Fleetwood are the type of team that can be difficult to play against as they can play with a freedom, they won’t be tense, they can enjoy their attacking options.

“You play teams at the top and bottom and people say those in the middle have their slippers on, they haven’t. They can be difficult as they can play with a freedom and sometimes they play better when no pressure on them.

“It will be a good open game and we have to hope it’s an open game played in their half.”

Liam Coyle and Ethan Hamilton are back after injury with Tommy Leigh also in the frame for a starting place. Captain Seamus Conneely is back running but remains sidelined.

The full pre-match interview with John Coleman is available to watch on the club's official YouTube channel, CLICK HERE to find out more!

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