LEAM Richardson felt Accrington Stanley produced one of their best performances of the season on Saturday – despite admitting disappointment that it did not result in victory against Cheltenham.

Stanley drew 2-2 with the promotion-chasing Robins at the Store First Stadium, with James Beattie finding the net twice as the Reds largely dominated the game.

The result kept them in the League Two relegation zone but Richardson was delighted with the response to dropping into the bottom two earlier in the week.

“I’d go as far as saying that without winning the game that’s one of our best performances of the season, against a very good team,” he said.

“The disappointing thing is we didn’t win the game. We must start winning games, I don’t hide from the fact.

“Cheltenham will have got on the bus wondering how they’ve gone away with something.

“Through the team we asked everyone to be a man, stand up, take stock of where we are and let’s go together. I thought we did that.

“How we responded to going behind was fantastic. It didn’t affect us in the slightest, whereas in recent months it would have took us a while to come back from that.

“We had enough chances to win five games but sadly we haven’t.”

Stanley travel to Rochdale tomorrow night and the manager is certain that level of performance will help them climb out of trouble.

“If they play like that for the next 13 games we’ll win a lot more than we lose,” he said.

“I’m really looking forward to Tuesday now but we must maintain our standard.

“We can’t have a great performance one week and have a dip the next. We can’t afford to do that any more.

“But if you’re confident in what you do, there’s no problem.

“I’ve never questioned myself or the lads or my staff, not once. I thoroughly believe we’re as good as you’ve just seen.”

Beattie, who turns 35 on Wednesday, ended a run of nine games without a goal with his brace.

Richardson said: “He deserved his two goals. Before the game he was rallying the lads, he’s a great influence on them. What we’ve got to be careful of is he’s James Beattie and we do sometimes expect too much.

“He’s at an age now where he’s more influential off the pitch, and on the pitch when he puts performances in like that he’s just as influential.

“But other lads can’t just rely on him, we’re in a team game.

“I’m made up for him that he got his goals but it could have been anybody, a handful of our team could have been on the scoresheet.”