GOALKEEPER Rob Elliot hates making mistakes - but he will settle for them now rather than during the League Two campaign.
The Charlton loanee admitted he was at fault for Blackburn Rovers' first goal as the League new boys came up against an almost full-strength Ewood side at the Fraser Eagle Stadium on Wednesday.
The goalie parried away a 25-yard Paul Gallagher rasping shot and it fell nicely for Rovers £2.2m debutant Jason Roberts to pounce and fire home the opener on 18 minutes.
"It was terrible goal from our point of view," admitted boss John Coleman. "Robbie Elliot should do better than that. He is a miles better keeper but we should have got tighter in their midfield in the build up to it."
And Elliot echoed his manager's sentiments.
"I should have kept hold of it. I went to parry the ball and it kicked up at me. The pitch didn't help but I am not making excuses.
"I would, though, rather get it out the way now. It was my fault but hopefully that will be it.
"I would throw the ball into the net every game in pre-season if I can have a good season after that."
Despite that goal and ultimately a 3-0 loss, Stanley should have been proud of themselves against a Rovers side who qualified for the UEFA Cup last season and are are worth millions of pounds. Internationals Robbie Savage and Morten Gamst Pedersen and new signings Roberts and Francis Jeffers were all in their starting XI.
And, apart from that one lapse, the Stanley back line in the first half of Peter Cavanagh, Michael Welch, Robbie Williams and Leam Richardson did well against Blackburn's highly-rated strikeforce.
Every Reds player seemed to enjoy their battle against the Premier side and Elliot, who played in the first half, felt Stanley can learn a lot from the way Blackburn played.
"They are no mugs and their forward line will cause a lot of trouble in the Premiership," said Elliot, who is on loan from Premier side Charlton Athletic and played alongside Jeffers there. "They are all quality and good on the ball and that is what we have got to try and emulate next season.
"It was a good test against Premier players and it shows what you have got to be like if you want to move on. They showed that, if you are to be a Premiership player, you don't just have to be a good footballer as their work rate was also unbelieveable and we should have matched that but we didn't.
"I think we could have done better and created a few more chances but our back four did really well under pressure."
Stanley's best chance in the first half was an inswinging corner from Ian Craney which Zurab Khizanishvilli cleared off the line.
Stanley put on a whole new eleven in the second half while Rovers - in their first pre-season outing before a tour of Austria and Germany - made five initial changes.
And Stanley's new-look forward line of Andy Todd, David Brown and Andy Mangan were unlucky not to get on the scoresheet.
Instead the Reds fell once to a superb piece of skill and later to a somewhat fortunate goal. In the 66th minute, Frenchman Didier Agathe, on trial from Celtic, weaved his way past three defenders before firing in a cross which debutant Jeffers forced over the line.
Then, in the 75th minute, former Great Harwood striker Matty Derbyshire saw his first header hit the bar but was there to follow it up and head into an empty net to make it three.
Stanley set up a grandstand finish. The strung together some neat passing moves with Mangan involved in most - and both he and Brown came close from range - before the young striker had to come off injured and Roberts re-entered the field for the final 15 minutes. The winger was given a free role and certainly tested the Premier defence.
Todd ballooned over in front of goal from a Roberts' ball in and Joel Byrom, against the club which released him in the summer, turned and fired what looked like a certain goal into the top corner but keeper Jason Brown somehow kept it out.
It left Coleman bemoaning his side's luck.
"I think the difference was probably Premiership quality finishing. I don't like losing games and I don't remember our keepers having to make any kind of save yet we have lost 3-0.
"They have been clinical in front of goal and you have got to take your hat off to them, that's why they are good players.
"I was really impressed with Blackburn's work-rate in the first half. It was refreshing to see a side so high come here and have no airs and graces about them.
"I think that will stand them in good stead for the season and it will help our lads a little bit about how you have to approach these games. We defended really well in the first half. On the balance of play in the second half, I thought we were the better side but we have lost that half 2-0. That's football.
"I was disappointed at half-time and the players were told in no uncertain terms that my team have only one way of playing - working hard on the front foot, closing people down and winning the ball high up the pitch."
He added: "I learnt, against Blackburn, that if you are going to compete against better teams the more time you give them, the more you are going to get hurt."
STANLEY 1st half: Elliot , Cavanagh, Richardson, Williams, Welch, Howell, Doherty, Craney, Guillerme, Boco, Roberts; STANLEY 2nd half: Dunbavin, Mangan, Brown, Harris, Edwards, N'Da, Foyle, Ventre, Todd, Byrom, Procter.
BLACKBURN: Friedel, Agathe, Gray, Todd, Khizanishvilli, Gallagher, Bentley, Savage, Pedersen, Jeffers, Roberts. Subs: Brown, Tugay, Matteo, Mokeona, Kuqi, Derbyshire, Peter, Douglas, Taylor.