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Club News

EYE ON THE OPPOSITION | Accrington Stanley (A)

6 April 2023

Club News

EYE ON THE OPPOSITION | Accrington Stanley (A)

6 April 2023

Vale are looking to get back to winning ways on Good Friday as we travel up to Lancashire to face Accrington Stanley at the Wham Stadium.

The ‘Owd Reds are currently in the midst of a relegation battle as they sit 21st in League One, three points from safety.

After two weeks of rest, Stanley have had time to move on from their last result, a 5-0 loss away at Exeter City.

Vale will also be looking to bounce back from their last match, a 2-0 loss at Vale Park to Cambridge United last Saturday.

The result left the Valiants 17th in the table on 45 points, and the side are hungry to turn things around going into the final seven games of the season, with the hope of climbing back up the table.

Before the two sides face off in Lancashire on Friday afternoon, here is what you need to know about Accrington.

ONE TO WATCH: Sean McConville

There was only ever one man we could pick for this section, and that’s Mr.Stanley himself, Sean McConville.

Currently, into his second spell at the club, McConville has made over 400 appearances for the ‘Owd Reds, netting 70 goals and providing 93 assists in the process.

Born in Liverpool, Accrington’s number 11 started his career at non-league Skelmersdale United, before making the move to Stanley in 2009.

McConville's first stint lasted two years, during which he scored 14 goals in just under 90 appearances in Lancashire.

Spells at Stockport County, Rochdale, Barrow, Stalybridge Celtic, and Chester then followed for the midfielder before he returned to his spiritual home in 2015.

Since returning to Accrington, McConville has enjoyed a lot of success, including playing a major part in the team that clinched the Sky Bet League Two title in 2018.

The left-sided midfielder still plays a pivotal role in John Coleman’s team today, and so far, this season he has notched up a tally of eight goal involvements in the league.


Like McConville, Stanley boss John Coleman is a club legend after spending a total of 21 years at the club over two spells.

Before his time as a manager, Coleman was once a player that spent most of his career in the northwest of England with the likes of Southport and Morecambe.

Coleman made the jump to coaching in 1997 as player-manager of Ashton United where he enjoyed two years of his career.

In 1999, the 60-year-old’s first stint at the helm of Accrington Stanley began, and that was the start of a very successful time at the club.

His first spell lasted 12 and a half years and, in that time, Coleman oversaw multiple promotions, including guiding them into the football league in 2006.

In 2012 Coleman left the ‘Owd Reds for Rochdale, but unfortunately for him, his time in Greater Manchester ended after a year.

Southport and Sligo Rovers were the next two destinations for Coleman, but they never seemed like the right fit and he returned to Stanley in September 2014.

Now over eight years into his second tenure at the club, Coleman has overseen promotion to League One as champions after conquering the fourth tier in 2018, and he is now facing the unenviable task of keeping them in the division.

STADIUM: The Wham Stadium

The Wham Stadium, also known as the Crown Ground, has been the home of Accrington Stanley since it was built in 1968.

The stadium is one of the smallest in the division and can hold a maximum capacity of approximately 5,450 fans.

So far, more than 1,000 Valiants are expected to travel to Lancashire, and Darrell Clarke’s side will be looking to give them plenty to cheer about.


Vale wins: 2

Draws: 1

Accrington wins: 2

When we collide with Accrington there are always goals, with the two sides racking up a total of 19 goals in their last five fixtures.

It is normally a tight affair when these two teams collide, and earlier this season it was no different, as a David Worrall strike cancelled out Aaron Pressley’s penalty in a 1-1 draw at Vale Park.


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