Accrington Stanley boss plans Beattie talks

First published in Sport Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter

ACCRINGTON Stanley boss Leam Richardson will hold talks with James Beattie in the next few days to determine whether the former England international wants to remain at the club.

Beattie’s short-term deal as player-coach at the Crown Ground expires on Thursday, meaning Saturday’s 2-0 home loss to Dagenham and Redbridge may have been the last of his 10 appearances for the club.

Richardson is still keen to keep his former Blackburn Rovers youth team colleague at the club for the rest of the season if possible.

But much will depend on whether Beattie is willing to continue commuting from Cheshire and if the 34-year-old receives other offers that could tempt him elsewhere.

“Obviously contract wise that was his last game because it ends on January 9,” Richardson said.

“But I’m going to sit down with James, like I have done for the past few weeks, and speak to him.

“Geographically and with his family, his personal life and his professional life we need to have a chat. It can’t just be decided on a whim.

“We need to talk about it properly, which we will.”

Beattie could not help Stanley avoid a home loss on Saturday, with Richardson keeping his players in the dressing room for half an hour after the match to discuss what went wrong.

“I couldn’t be more disappointed than I am right now and the lads are the same,” said the boss, who lost former Bolton right back Nicky Hunt to injury hours before kick-off.

“There’s not much you can say about the performance and the result reflects that.

“We didn’t really deserve much out of the game.

“It was a blow to lose Nicky so late towards kick-off.

“He came in on Tuesday and did smashing, and you want to build momentum and build on what we did on Tuesday.

“This was a game we could have turned up and won.

“We’ve gone from very good against Chesterfield to not great against Dagenham in a matter of days.

“They are a young group and I think Christmas has taken its toll a little bit.

“It’s important we don’t get too down. It’s important we stick together.”

And Richardson says he will continue in his bid to add to his squad during the January transfer window.

“It’s something we’ve been aware of over the Christmas period,” he said.

“There are a few lads we’re trying to get to make us better, and that hasn’t changed.

“If we do that we’ll be okay.”

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