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No more bad boys

ACCRINGTON Stanley will know in seven days if they will have to pay a £10,000 fine for their poor disciplinary record from last season.

ACCRINGTON Stanley will know in seven days if they will have to pay a £10,000 fine for their poor disciplinary record from last season.

Stanley had the second worst disciplinary record in the country with 15 red cards and more than 70 yellow cards and Reds chairman Eric Whalley and boss John Coleman went before the FA Disciplinary Committee in Manchester on Wednesday.

"We will hear in seven days but we are hoping it is a suspended fine," said the chairman, after what was their second hearing before the FA committee.

"We know we have got to improve our discipline or we will have to take action. We had the second worst disciplinary record in the country while Peter Cavanagh was one of the top three players in all divisions for the worst discipline - I think he missed around eight games because of it."

"We have told the FA we will alleviate it and we will."

Skipper Cavanagh picked up 10 yellow and three red cards while defender Steve Halford had the most dismissals with four sendings-off.

"Usually players will get an automatic ban because of this but the FA had looked at Steve's record and knew he hadn't missed one game the season before and that three of the sendings off were for last man. They took that into account."

Coleman backed his team to the FA and hopes they will give his side a chance as it was their first season in the Nationwide Conference.

He said: "If you look at the statistics it looks like we are a dirty team and we know the players have got to take responsibility next season and stop it."

"But we have had two bookings for dissent and one for violent conduct in all those - many have been "silly" bookings. We have got to improve on that."

Coleman gave himself a run out in the last five minutes of the quickly arranged game at North Counties East side Harrogate Railway on Wednesday. Stanley won 2-1 with Damien Hindle opening the scoring and Lutel James scoring a superb solo goal after beating four players.

And the Accrington fans got their first look at Turkish keeper Nejbet Hussein, who was born in London but played in the Turkish Second Division last year. He played in the first half although didn't have much to do before he was replaced by Danny Alcock at the break and the latter is hoping he has done enough to win a Reds contract after a number of friendly appearances.

And Coleman is waiting to speak to ex-York shot-stopper Mark Ovendale who played between the sticks for Stanley on Monday's night's 1-1 draw with Crewe and looked assured.

"I am waiting to speak to Mark's agent while Danny has impressed me every time he has played and I will be speaking to him soon," confirmed the boss.

The battle to bring over Australian international goalie Jason Petkovic looks over and done with.

"It looks dead and buried. There is a not a lot we can do about the work permit," conceded Coleman.

One Stanley trialist, defender Ian Hughes, who has played a number of friendlies for the Reds, has joined North West Counties side Bacup Borough. "I will still speak to Ian before the season starts," said Coleman who has made no secret of his chase for a centre half.

Meanwhile, Stanley continue their pre-season on Saturday at home against player-coach Paul Cook's former club Wolves, who were relegated from the Premiership last season (ko 3pm).

"We have got to keep our standards up and keep our shape," said Coleman.

"Dave Jones will be coming and there should be some first teamers."

Gambian international striker Baboucarr Njie, who came on against Crewe, will get another run out for Stanley while winger Rory Prendergast is still recovering from a groin strain and Cook is hoping to have shaken off an ankle injury.

  • FORMER Stanley keeper Jon Kennedy is having trials with Burton Albion - Stanley's opponents on the opening day of the season.


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