ACCRINGTON Stanley have snapped up their first signing of the transfer window in Alan Rogers and they hope there is more quality to follow.
After chalking up their first win in 11 League games at Wrexham on New Year's Day, boss John Coleman moved swiftly to bolster his ravaged squad as the window opened on Monday.
Left back Rogers turned 30 this week and spent three spells with Nottingham Forest - costing initially £2million and he was a member of the side which gained promotion to the Premiership - as well as listing Tranmere, Wigan, Leicester, Hull and Bradford on his CV.
The Liverpool-born defender left Colin Todd's side in October and had talked about giving up the game but he has been a long-term target of Coleman's and the manager has persuaded him to join Stanley's cause on a month's loan.
"He played 10 games in the League One this season and a lot of games in the Championship last year. He still needs his match fitness but his actual body fitness is good," said Coleman. "We are a young side especially defensively so his experience should be a big help to us."
Coleman was also hoping to have Liverpool midfielder David Mannix back at Stanley after his one month loan spell was cut short with injury last month.
The 21-year-old is considering other options though and Crewe striker Luke Rodgers is also still weighing up his choices as he is keen to stay in League One.
"I have spoke to both of them and expect to know more next week and it looks unlikley I will get any more players in before tomorrow's (Sat) game at Boston.
"But I am also waiting to hear from a League One defender and a Championship striker. Both are young players but I hope I can sign them. If I do then we will have a strong squad to go and compete in the second half of the season."
And Coleman is hoping no one comes and tries to steal his top players, especially winger Shaun Whalley who is on loan from Witton Albion and has impressed.
"He played fantastically against Wrexham and he is one of those players who looks quicker on the eye on the ball than off it. He has got a turn of pace and is a talent and when he uses it he is a handful.
"He can hurt defences and we are hoping he will get better."
The 3-1 win over the Welsh side was vital and, although Stanley stayed in 22nd position, they now have a six point gap over bottom club Torquay.
"The win over Wrexham takes some of the pressure off us but it is going to be a long hard scrap," said Coleman. "Boston had a good win on New Year's Day as did Macclesfield and Rochdale.
"There are going to be six or seven teams down there and we have got to make sure we get our heads above them and don't put too much pressure on ourselves."
And they can certainly ease the pressure tomorrow (Sat) at Boston - who are just one point and one place above Stanley. Both sides have conceded the most goals in League Two.
"It is another massive game for us but we have got to replicate what we did against Wrexham," said the Reds chief. "We are maybe playing them at the wrong time as a couple of weeks ago they were caught up with threats to strike after their wages hadn't been paid but they look to have recovered from that.
"But we can't worry about them. We have to worry about ourselves and hopefully we now have the confidence to go on and get another result.
"I don't think our performances have warranted the position we are in but, saying that, the table won't lie and we have conceded far too many bad goals and that is something we have got to address.
"We must be going in the right direction though as we are not conceding three in a game now but only one and the next step is a clean sheet - hopefully tomorrow.
"All my players got eight out of ten in my eyes on Monday and if they do that you generally don't lose games."
Coleman is still dealing with his injury crisis for tomorrow's clash.
Long term casualties Peter Cavanagh, Andy Tretton, Leighton McGivern and Danny Ventre are still out while keeper Ian Dunbavin and Leam Richardson are both doubts with niggling injuries.
But striker Andy Mangan and Phil Edwards are back from suspension to give the boss more options.
And Benin international Rommy Boco is expected back within the next couple of weeks after being sidelined since November with a back injury.
- PAUL Cook, who left Stanley in the summer to manage Southport, has parted company with bottom-of-the-table Conference side by mutual consent.
"Things seem to have conspired against him," said Coleman. "By all accounts they should have beaten Morecambe and had plenty of chances against Northwich but these thing happen when things aren't going for you."
Cook's player-coach role has never been filled but Coleman said he hadn't discussed it with the former Burnley player since he left Haig Avenue.