Stanley boss James Beattie insists he still believes in his players despite being rooted to the bottom of League Two.
The Reds head into Saturday’s derby with Rochdale three points adrift after suffering a seventh straight defeat at Hartlepool last Saturday.
But Beattie has kept smiling at training this week in a bid to keep spirits high in the Accy camp.
“That’s what I believe is the best way to get over disappointments like this,” he said.
“We’re at the bottom of the table and the table doesn’t lie so we’ve got a helluva job on.
“I believe in the squad and we need to stick together now. We need to carry on working as we have been doing and results will turn.
“There’s not been any pressure for me,” Beattie added. “We’ve been creating chances and that’s when I would be worried – if we weren’t.”
Loanee Kayode Odejayi made his debut at Hartlepool, laying on the Reds’ first goal in seven games for James Gray, and Beattie reckons the powerful striker will carry an even greater threat against Dale after another week’s training with his new team-mates.
“I was pleased for James but we came away with no points again,” said the Reds’ boss.
“We gave it a go. I can’t fault the effort of the lads in the last 20 minutes but football’s a 90-minute game.
“We changed some personnel, freshened it up a bit, and I thought Kayode had a very good debut.
“He won a lot in the air and created things, we just didn’t seem to catch on with our other forward players.
“He was making flick-ons which would have given us opportunities so he was pleasing.
“We just need to do a bit more work with him in the shape to give the lads options and for them to realise when we can go long and when we can play football.”
In Dale, Stanley face another side that likes to get the ball down whenever possible and last season’s corresponding fixture attracted a gate of 2,678.
With attendances having dropped this season, chairman Peter Marsden has warned the club could go out of business (see page two), so captain Luke Joyce has urged the Accrington family to rally behind the Reds this Saturday.
“The more fans we get through the turnstiles then the better the atmosphere and the more it spurs us on,” said the midfielder. “It all helps.
“We know the fans have got to see results and performances to make them come, but at the same time, if we get that support then it’ll only help us to do better.
“When you go to an away ground and the home fans are singing and bouncing, it does make your job harder.
“When teams come to our place, it’s quiet and there aren’t many fans on, it’s not as daunting a task for them.
“We understand we’ve got to put on a show and a performance which will make them come back, and hopefully we can do that on Saturday.”
Jason Kennedy’s strike gave Dale a 3-2 victory at Accy last October while the Reds won 3-0 at Spotland in February and Joyce expects another thriller.
“I remember that night at Spotland,” he said.
“We were quite happy to get to half-time at 0-0 because they play good football, they keep the ball well and they’ve got good movement.
“I’m sure there’ll be a good atmosphere and it’ll be a good game of football because Rochdale want to play the right way, like we do.
“But we fancy ourselves against anyone at home. It’s a derby game, there’ll be a good crowd on and I’m looking forward to it.”
Nicky Hunt (knee) could ease Accy’s injury problems having returned to training although Danny Webber (hamstring) remains doubtful.
With Michael Liddle (ankle) and Laurence Wilson (groin) still out, a left-back has trained with the Reds this week with a view to signing a short-term deal.