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Ged aims for Trophy goal

GED Brannan admits he is "desperate" to score for Accrington Stanley - and his first goal could come at no better time for his boss than the Lancashire FA Marsden Trophy final first leg against Morecambe.

GED Brannan admits he is "desperate" to score for Accrington Stanley - and his first goal could come at no better time for his boss than the Lancashire FA Marsden Trophy final first leg against Morecambe.

Former Shrimps hero Coleman is more than eager to get one over on Jim Harvey's side at the Interlink on Tuesday with the second leg at Christie Park the Tuesday after. Stanley will be without the suspended Rory Prendergast - who has picked up 10 bookings - and Steve Halford but midfielder Brannan is keen open his Stanley account.

"The manager is desperate to win that one with it being his old club and he wants some silverware this season," said Brannan.

Former Manchester City and Wigan player Brannan says he usually averages around eight goals a season and can't believe he hasn't stuck the ball in the back of his net since he arrived at Stanley in November.

"It is a nightmare - I am desperate to score," he said. "I have done everything but - I have hit the bar and had efforts cleared off the line. I know once I get one I will get more and I will get one before the end of the season. I keep trying to I might just give up and then hope I can sneak one in when I am not thinking about it!"

To add more spice to the event, the 32-year-old has had a little wager concerning team-mate Paul Cook.

"I have bet the gaffer that I would score more goals than Paul Cook at the end of the season - he has one now so I have got to get at least one!"

Dean Calcutt, Darren Kempson and Steve Flitcroft have all got one on the board recently - and Brannan wants to make sure his name is up there next. And it would be good to find the target against Morecambe.

"They aren't a bad side in the two games we have played against them but we should have won them both. Hacker was unlucky with his own goal in the 1-0 loss at Morecambe - it was a good finish by him though!"

Brannan admits he has suffered a frustrating time after being plagued by a thigh injury from January.

"My form is now improving with games but it has been hard with the injury. I should have left it a month to recover but I kept coming back too early and it kept setting me back. Some injuries you can play through the pain but with this one I couldn't run on it - it was hard having to sit out the games."

Stanley are without a game on Saturday as their scheduled opponents Telford are in FA Trophy action and that game has been rearranged for Thursday, 8 April.

"It is frustrating to not have a game. I am gutted as when you are winning you want to carry on playing. It has been a long season with the cups and perhpas there is a few tired legs but I just want to keep playing."

And, despite Saturday's 2-1 win over Stevenage, Brannan admits it has been a frustrating time with two wins in their last nine Conference games.

"It has been really disappointing. I think we have done well against the top ten teams but it is the lower teams we have struggled against. If we had taken maximum points against them - and they are games we should have won - we could have been second. It is easy to say that and perhaps it is too soon for the club as we are still finding our feet in this league but when we are full-time next season we will hopefully notice the difference."

Brannan has spent his career in league football and says the referees in the Conference - with Stanley having a poor disciplinary record - have surprised him.

"I haven't been able to believe some of the decisions - Hacker should never have been sent off against Hereford and that cost us a player and three points. Sometimes you can't believe what you are seeing and it is hard for us. Especially away from home, we seem to get some strange decisions against us and, as a club, we have suffered because of it. But everyone knows the manager will never give up until it is impossible and although the play-offs are a long shot, we will see if through to the finish.

"And, I know the expectations have been high because of what we have done this season, but if we finish where we are now it has been a good season. We are a part-time club, in this league for the first time, and sometimes you need to take a step back and look at what we have achieved."


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