ACCRINGTON Stanley may have been beaten at Oxford United on Tuesday, but John Coleman insists it was never a game worthy of a 3-0 defeat.

The Reds missed a hatful of chances at the Kassam Stadium as the more clinical Oxford handed them their second loss in as many games.

Coleman praised strike duo Colby Bishop and Dion Charles, highlighting how they did everything right apart from putting the ball in the back of the net.

"I might not know much about football, but it was definitely not a 3-0, that's for sure," said Coleman.

"I thought we were better than Oxford in every department apart from the one that mattered and that's putting the ball in the net.

"They've taken their chances, but we had better chances and we fluffed them, that's the top and bottom of it.

"Oxford are a good side, I thought they played better at our place than what they did to be honest. We've absolutely dominated the first half, it's 12 minutes before our goalkeeper's touched the ball and the first thing he's doing is picking it out the net. "15 seconds earlier, we've had a glorious chance to go 1-0 up. We've proceeded to miss chance after chance. "We started the second half really brightly, had them on the back foot and then they counter attack on us. They were playing like the away team, they countered on us and scored.

"They got their tails up for five, 10 minutes and then we came back into the game. We missed some more good chances and then once the third goes in, you know it's over and they can play with the freedom and they can pop the ball about.

"They hardly passed the ball in the first half; it wasn't like Oxford the way they played in the first half and I think you've got to give our players credit for that.

"We've made the second most chances in the league and we continue to miss them, and we do it on an alarming basis and that's when you're going to concede goals that you're going to have problems."

Stanley top scorer Colby Bishop was restored to the starting XI after recovering from a hamstring injury and the manager praised the performance of the striker.

"Colby Bishop’s coming back from injury and I thought he did really well here," Coleman added.

"He’s held the play up well and was a focal point, won his headers, linked up really well. Dion Charles does everything right apart from the final thing which is put the ball in the back of the net. "We’ve got to keep working at it, they’re only young lads and hopefully, they’ll get better."

Coleman bemoaned Stanley losing the ball on the edge of their own box to allow Karl Robinson's side to open up a two-goal cushion.

"They barely laid a glove on us in the first half. They’ve scored the goal and that’s about it really," added the Reds boss.

"They had a loopy header over the bar and a little bit of a scramble from a free kick, but they didn’t lay a glove on us. We conceded the second goal when we had possession on the edge of the box and that’s criminal.

"They relaxed after it went 2-0 and they can play with a freedom. They’re a good side, we’ve seen first-hand at our place how good they are.

"We’ve been the architects of our own downfall tonight."