ACCRINGTON Stanley ever-present Mark Hughes has been ruled out for the rest of the season through injury.

The experienced defender had played every minute of every League One game this season up until limping out of the 7-0 defeat at Peterborough just after the half-hour.

And it has since been revealed Hughes has suffered a hamstring tear, meaning he will play no further part in the Reds' remaining 10 games.

“Mark has torn a muscle in his hamstring and is out for the season which is a blow, he has been terrific for years and has been a permanent fixture and we will miss him badly," said manager John Coleman, who confirmed that young midfielder Rhys Fenlon - who was a second half substitute at London Road - has also had his season cut short by injury.

“Mark has put his body on the line time and time again, he has rarely missed many games and very rarely goes down injured so for him to come off had to be something serious."

Hughes' lay-off has added to an already extensive injury list at the Wham Stadium, with Joe Pritchard and Colby Bishop still sidelined.

However, it is showing some signs of easing with captain Seamus Conneely pushing for a return along with Ben Barclay, Sean McConville was hoping to be fit after taking a knock last weekend, while Dion Charles has returned to the squad in time for today's Good Friday game at home to Burton Albion (kick-off 3pm) fresh from his Northern Ireland debut.

Stanley will need all hands on deck to bounce back from that thrashing by Posh.

But while Coleman was disappointed by the scoreline he insists he could not fault his players' commitment at any stage this season.

“It was a blow for us on Saturday but if you look at the run of stats, we had five players who ran over 10k and three who ran over 11k so it’s not for the want of trying," said the Stanley boss.

“We have looked at it again briefly with the lads, we didn’t want to dwell on it too much and we have to defend better and we have shown throughout the season that we are capable of defending well.

“There were certain things which conspired against us such as Mark getting injured after a few minutes.

“He should have come off then but tried to soldier on and he paid the price for it."

Coleman added: “I am pleased with the effort our lads have shown all season, you can’t fault that, they have ran through brick walls for us. We are thin on the ground but the lads called into play have done the same, so I have got no complaints on the score of effort.

“It’s frustrating as some of the goals we have conceded are silly but that’s the nature of football, I think most goals are conceded by mistakes and we have got to try and eliminate the mistakes we are making.

“All we can do is focus on the Burton game and try and get ourselves as organised and strong as we can.

“There have been a lot of changes since we last played them and we will go out and give it our best shot.”