BUOYANT Stanley make the short trip to Rochdale on Sunday praying they can at last beat them.
In the three previous matches against the Dale, John Coleman’s side haven’t been blessed with a win but they will be full of confidence after coming back twice to overcome local rivals Morecambe 3-2 at the FES on Wednesday night.
The Reds are on a good run with three wins in their last four games while the Spotland outfit are out-of-sorts, having lost their last five home matches.
"It is another local derby for us and, in the past, we have not acquitted ourselves well against Rochdale," said Coleman.
"We have not shown our true side in the three games we have played against them.
"Hopefully on Sunday, we will do that.
"Sides struggling at home seems to be the way the league has gone this season.
"Teams are losing a lot at home but we know that, on their day, Rochdale are a very good side."
Keith Hill’s side though are still pushing for a play-off spot while Stanley, with nine games left of the League Two campaign, are looking to pass the 50-point mark total from last season and finish higher than the 20th spot from the last campaign.
The win over the Shrimps put them on 45, in 15th place, as Coleman nears his target.
"50 should be enough for safety," said the Reds’ chief.
"We are five points off it and have three hard games coming up (in Rochdale, Chesterfield and the MK Dons) so it was important we got three points on Wednesday night. Now we have got to build on that."
The goal hero was Paul Mullin who ended a nine-game goal drought by firing home the winning goal - his 13th goal of the season.
"I have got to admit, it is a relief," said the striker. "It was becoming a monkey on my back.
"I hadn’t really thought about it until the gaffer mentioned it a couple of weeks ago and then everyone has been mentioning it ever since!
"I wasn’t overly worried as I knew I had been working hard and I knew a goal would come soon but it is just the waiting.
"Now hopefully we can go on a bit of a run and I can bag a few more before the end of the season."
And he wants this to start at Spotland where he echoed his manager’s sentiments, knowing the Reds have a point to prove.
"We have never done ourselves justice against Rochdale in all the games we have played and the last one at Spotland last season sticks out."
This was when Stanley were 3-0 down early on and Rochdale even missed a penalty before the Reds eventually lost 4-2. Coleman slammed the performance as "shambolic".
Mullin admitted: "It was a really bad show and we had taken a good away following who always get behind us. I am sure we will again and we owe them a good performance.
"We have made it too easy for Rochdale in the past but we will be going there full of confidence. It does seem a bit odd playing on a Sunday but I am sure, because it is another local derby, it will be a good game.
"And we want another three points. We have got nine games left and we don’t want to limp over the line.
"We can finish in the top half of the table which is no mean achievement considering where we were a month ago and we want to push on."
Stanley will be without record signing Ian Craney who came off with a hip injury at half-time during the win over Morecambe and it doesn’t look good for Sunday.
Defender Robbie Williams (knee), captain Peter Cavanagh (Achilles) and midfielder Andy Procter (shoulder) remain sidelined.
For Rochdale, winger Ben Muirhead could come in for teenager Kallum Higginbotham (knock) while striker Lee Thorpe has recovered from a virus.
* STANLEY reserves are in action at Bury next Wednesday (ko 7pm).