STANLEY boss James Beattie will bend the ear of Burnley boss Sean Dyche tomorrow (Saturday) as he aims to boost his squad for the new season.
After playing out a 2-2 draw at home to Blackburn on Wednesday night, the Reds welcome Rovers’ bitter rivals to the Store First Stadium this Saturday for their fourth pre-season friendly.
Dyche led the Clarets to promotion last term and has revamped his squad for the club’s return to the Premier League.
And although Beattie already has most of his men in place, he hopes Dyche and Blackburn boss Gary Bowyer can lend a hand this term.
“I spoke to Gary a lot of times last season and they’ve tried to help us out,” said Beattie.
“I’ve spoken to Sean a number of times too and he’s been great.
“I’ve asked them both about different scenarios, about what they would do, and I’ve been picking their brains for which players we can have for next to nothing – or nothing!”
Beattie persuaded Fulham to let Stanley borrow Marcus Bettinelli for most of last season and the 22-year-old keeper went on to win the Reds’ young player of the year award.
Since returning to Fulham he’s been playing in the first-team’s pre-season friendlies so Beattie plans to utilise the loan market again this summer.
“I need to be really clever in that and get some good ones in,” he said.
“If we can get a couple in of the quality of Marcus Bettinelli last season, he was outstanding for us.
“Not every loan signing is going to be like that but hopefully we can get a couple and add to this group.
“It’s a great group, the lads are all friends and they socialise together, which is what I want.
“They’re going to be good players if they’re coming in but they’re also going to have to fit in with the character of the lads already in the squad.
“We do a lot of work on that and hopefully we can bring a few in, whether they’ll be signed players (permanently) or players on loan, I can’t say at the minute.”
Adam Buxton also arrived on loan last term and after being released by Wigan at the end of the campaign, the versatile full-back has returned on a permanent deal.
Beattie now has almost 20 players already secured for the new season with another two weeks to go until the big kick-off on August 9.
“I’m delighted with the number of players we’ve got at the moment and the squad I’ve got,” he said.
“I think we’ve got the nucleus of a very good team. It’s the nucleus of the team that finished last season in really good form. But that’s gone now, we’re starting a new season so I’ll be looking to add a couple more players, if possible, within the budget I have.
“I know our budget has been cut again but we’ve got 18 contracted players, which is a really good position to be in,” added the Reds’ boss.
“I’m happy with what the chairman and the board are talking about with things that are potentially going to happen at the club.
“I just need their support now with getting another couple of players in, to sanction these loan moves and hopefully we can put out a decent squad and have a good season.”
Piero Mingoia and James Gray scored in each half against Blackburn, twice putting Stanley ahead, but Rovers equalised through David Dunn and Tom Cairney to secure a 2-2 draw at the Store First Stadium.
The Reds are back on the road next Tuesday to visit Altrincham.