LIAM Nolan’s stoppage time goal gave Accrington Stanley a 3-2 win in their opening Checkatrade Trophy group game against Middlesbrough under 21s.

The midfielder came off the bench to score in the 93rd minute to give the Reds a 3-2 victory.

John Coleman changed all 10 outfield players from the weekend league win at Chesterfield with Erico Sousa and Callum Johnson making their competitive Stanley debuts.

That XI contained just two players over 23 and with Middlesbrough fielding a similarly youthful side there was a distinctly unfamiliar feel about the teams.

What was familiar was Stanley’s attacking intent, with Sousa crossing for Jonny Edwards to flick innocuously at Boro keeper Zach Hemming before Mallik Wilks tested the keeper more strenuously with a fierce strike from the edge of the box.

Middlesbrough, with former Stanley assistant manager Paul Stephenson at the helm, weren’t without their own threat with Luke Armstrong shooting wide before they took the lead when Mikael Soisalo cut the ball back to Patrick Reading who found the bottom right corner.

Coleman’s team should have levelled before half time when Tyler Forbes crossed from the left and Leeds loanee Wilks volleyed over from six yards when unopposed.

After the interval the Reds drew themselves level thanks to a touch of class from the most experienced man on the pitch when Scott Brown drilled home from the edge of the area.

Edwards and then Wilks had chances to put Stanley ahead but they were made to pay for not taking chances when the visitors went in front again when Armstrong fired beyond Chapman to make it 2-1.But again the Reds equalised quickly thanks to Wilks who smashed the ball emphatically into the top corner from just inside the box after great work by Mekhi McLeod.

Edwards was then denied by the woodwork when his acrobatic effort from a Reagan Ogle cross hit the bar.

As a penalty shootout loomed Nolan made his crucial contribution when the former Southport midfielder rifled beyond Hemming to give Stanley all three points.

Stanley: Chapman, Forbes, Sykes, Dallison, Ogle (Donacien), Sousa,Brown, Johnson (Nolan), McLeod (Watson), Wilks, Edwards.