ACCRINGTON Stanley handed trials to two players as they were knocked out of the Lancashire Senior Cup on penalties yesterday – while the Reds remain in talks with Cameron Belford over the loan keeper’s future.
Stanley boss Leam Richardson is still hoping to add to his squad before the closure of the January transfer window tomorrow night and has been assessing his goalkeeping options, with regular stopper Ian Dunbavin out with a long-term shoulder injury.
Belford has been on loan from Bury in recent weeks and could yet be handed an extended stay, with discussions ongoing.
The 24-year-old appeared to hint about his future on Twitter when he said he had ‘a lot of sorting out and decisions to be made’.
Stanley also fielded Tom Aldred, a 22-year-old centre back who hails from Bolton and was recently released by Colchester, as a trialist in the defeat to Rochdale yesterday.
Burnley-born midfielder Ben McKenna, previously with Carlisle, also turned out for Stanley as a substitute.
The Reds were beaten 5-3 on penalties at the Store First Stadium after a 2-2 draw.
Richardson used the quarter final tie to field a number of players who did not start in Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Plymouth in League Two, with Will Hatfield making his return from a brief lay-off with a broken hand. Lee Molyneux, George Miller, Luke Clark, Bohan Dixon and James Gray also featured against a youthful Rochdale side.
Stanley were behind midway through the first half yesterday when Joel Logan beat Andrew Dawber from close range.
The Reds lost Hatfield early in the second half after he took a blow to his injured hand, before Rochdale doubled their lead as Ola Rabiu scored.
Stanley substitute Aidan Chippendale halved the deficit and Gray then levelled the match with 10 minutes remaining.
Chippendale was denied a second goal as Stanley pushed for a winner but in the shoot-out Gray’s spot kick was saved as Rochdale won 5-3.