TONY Roberts might be the keeper Stanley fans love to hate - but he had the last laugh on Saturday.
The 39-year-old has been the Daggers stopper for nine years and has had many games against the Reds, especially in the non league days.
He was sent off in one match, conceded five in another and has celebrated a few Daggers wins over Accrington in their numerous meetings.
He takes the stick the Stanley fans dish out and most will admit they have grudging admiration for the Welshman who gives back as good as he gets in the game.
In fact he enjoys such banter with the crowd that one Accrington fan - unused to Roberts’ lively tactics on Saturday - said "That keeper needs to get on with the game and concentrate."
But the veteran seems to be able to switch off and on when needed - much to Andy Procter’s frustrations.
Manager John Coleman had been bemoaning his side’s bad luck this season but must have thought fortune was on his side, for once, when referee Carl Boyeson awarded the Reds a 90th minute penalty for a handball by Dagenham captain Magnus Okuonghae.
Visiting boss John Still called it a "joke" but a repeat showed that the defender did raise his hands in the area to block Kallum Higginbotham’s strike.
Up stepped Procter - a brave decision following his penalty miss the week before at Bournemouth - but Roberts, on his 400th appearance for the Daggers, dived low to deny him and heap misery on the midfielder.
The stopper turned around to the crowd who had bated him all game but admitted it was all friendly on his part.
"I have taken a lot of stick over the years - I think it first started when I got sent off against Accrington," said Roberts.
"I don’t mind. I always enjoy a good banter with the crowd and I like to have a good laugh - life is too serious at times."
But there were no laughter for Coleman as he admitted it was gutting for the Reds who could have had six points wrapped up in the last two games - and instead have taken one to keep them in a relegation fight.
"It is so frustrating," said Coleman, despite the Reds extending their gap from the bottom two to 11 points,
"We are so close to being a very good side but we cannot put the ball in the net.
"I still think we are playing good football but we are just not winning."
It even led to him quoting Monty Python as he has been saying the same after the majority of Stanley matches this season where they haven’t taken their chances and often fallen victim to a sloppy goal to deny them any points.
Luckily a killer blow didn’t come for Stanley on Saturday but it didn’t stop Coleman starting his post-match conference with: "In the words of Monty Python, good evening, I am here to talk about deja vu, the feeling you get when you have done something before.
"Good evening I am here to talk about deja vu . . "
Black humour by the Reds boss but he admitted it was the only way to view the game especially with the emotions in the dressing room after the game.
"Procky is distraught," he said. "To miss a penalty two weeks running is heart breaking and for Proc, the lad is devastated.
"He was man enough to take it though. He scored ten on the bounce for us so you can’t be too harsh on him.
"But apart from that, we also had other chances and we didn’t take them.
"On another day, with the same performance, we could have won five or six-nil. But we have just got to keep going."
The Daggers are one of the top scorers in the league but were without their main hitman Paul Benson who has had knee surgery and Still said their squad was decimated with injuries.
But the Reds were also suffering with Chris King (thigh), Leam Richardson (pelvis), Colin Murdock (glandular fever) and John Miles (back) the most recent casualties of an injury-prone season.
It was though Stanley, who extended their unbeaten run at home to five games, who dominated the first half.
A John-Paul Kissock effort was pushed away by Roberts while Procter’s free header was not on target.
Kissock fired in a number of corners which bobbled around the box while another Procter header was scrambled away by Roberts in an open game.
Winger Sam Saunders cleared a Phil Edwards' header off the line and, although it wasn’t quite free flowing football, the Reds were having chances and piling the pressure on the back line.
And it looked like the deadlock would finally be broken when Procter got the ball in front of goal, took it down but volleyed narrowly over on the half hour.
Keeper Roberts, the star of the first half show, then parried away Liverpool loanee Craig Lindfield's low shot while the stopper looked like he was finally beaten when Paul Mullin teed the ball up and fired goalwards but the crossbar denied the Reds’ striker what would have been a wonder goal.
It was a good first half for the Reds but they had failed to turn it into goals and it was the Daggers who upped their tempo after the break.
While never severely testing Arthur, Saunders fired in a hat-trick of corners in quick succession and the normally reliable keeperwas caught out of his goal chasing a loose ball which Wesley Thomas got to first but Peter Cavanagh was back to spare his keeper’s blushes.
Coleman put on three substitutes during the second half and one of these Sean McConville could have been celebrating his first ever league goal.
Five minutes from time the ex-Skelmersdale man burst onto Mullin’s through ball and one-on-one with Roberts he tried to side foot it and the ball weakly rolled into Roberts’ arms.
Then came the last ditch agony for Procter who, after being the chief penalty taker last season - and scoring five without missing one - may not volunteer for the duty again.
"If we could put the ball in the net we would be pushing for a play-off place. Instead we are in relegation scrap," added Coleman.