PAUL Smyth says Accrington Stanley have shown real character to bounce back from the 7-0 hammering at Peterborough United to boost their hopes of reaching the play-offs.

The Reds have picked up four points out of a possible six since that London Road drubbing and Smyth believes there is renewed confidence in the camp ahead of Saturday’s clash with AFC Wimbledon.

John Coleman’s side are five points outside the top six and the Northern Irish attacker - who scored in Easter Monday’s 2-1 win at Oxford United - insists there is all to play for going in to the final eight games of the season.

Of Stanley’s character, he said: “You have seen the result from a few games ago (against Peterborough), it wasn’t really the best of results we have had so we knew coming in to the past two games we needed a massive result.

“I think they boys knew what they had to do before the game, we needed a result.

“We got a draw (against Burton), I think we could have won the game and today was a massive game, we needed to win, we needed the three points and it was good to get on the scoresheet as well.”

Despite a poor run of results that had seen Stanley drop from sixth to 13th in the League One table, Smyth has never doubted the mentality of his teammates.

“The mentality of the boys is strong, after the result we had against Peterborough to come on and get a 0-0 (against Burton) and 2-1 (against Oxford), we can push on and be stronger,” he told the club website.

“We played a very, very good Oxford team and we took them to the wire and ended up beating them and taking the three points. Now we just have to push on to Wimbledon on Saturday.

“It’s another big game and hopefully we can get a result there and keep pushing forward.”

He added: “We know we will take it game by game and that is the best thing to do, you can’t look further ahead. So get the three points on Saturday and push on again.”

Smyth was delighted to get his name on the scoresheet again, his fourth league goal of the season and a first since scoring in the 4-1 defeat at Bristol Rovers last month.

Although he admits he did have to play second fiddle to Michael Nottingham’s stunning match-winner against the U’s.

“Quality finish,” said Smyth. “I said to him I am going to have to split my goal bonus with him because he doesn’t get one!

“It was a good finish and I thought that after we scored we had to defend well and see the game out.”

On scoring himself, Smyth added: “It gets frustrating when you keep getting chances and nothing is coming off for you and when it does, it feels good.

“It is like a relief after scoring a goal again and to get the three points was massive.”