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New players, bigger stadium on cards

STANLEY chiefs are already laying solid foundations for next season's Conference challenge.

STANLEY chiefs are already laying solid foundations for next season's Conference challenge.

Manager John Coleman is refusing to rest on his laurels in the wake of steering his side to the Conference for the first time in their history.

He has vowed to spread the net far and wide in order to net players from a higher level who he feels can help the club take the next step forward.

And big-thinking Reds' chairman Eric Whalley has promised Stanley's shining stars a stadium fit for the Football League.

Coleman said: "With the exception of Jamie Speare - who was already here when I arrived - this is my team and they are playing the way I want them to.

"Long may that continue, but the hard part for me is knowing I have to bring one or two new players in to strengthen - and that could mean a couple have to leave.

"That will be a really sad day because those players have served me and this club well.

"But they say the time to strengthen is at the top and that's got to be my number one aim.

"It's not simply a case of looking to sign players who have played at a higher level because some would doubtless come down into the comfort zone and not perform.

"What I want is players who will come down a level and be professional, hungry and keen to do a job for themselves and Accrington Stanley."

Whalley confirmed that several mystery players currently competing in the Football League had been approached.

And the Stanley stalwart is juggling his attempts to strengthen Coleman's hand with realising his ambition to transform the cosy Crown Ground into a 7,000 capacity arena.

Whalley explained: "The ground is already well above Conference standard.

"But with forward planning we already have an application lodged with the local council to build a brand-new 1,750 all-seater stand on the Whinney Hill side of the ground.

"That will meet the Football League criteria for seating numbers, so that's another indication of our overall ambition."


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