DAN Barlaser is counting down the days until he is back in action after his red card last time out.

The Stanley midfielder was sent off in the Reds' 1-0 FA Cup fourth round defeat to Derby County on Saturday and misses tonight's League One game at Gillingham as a result.

Stanley chief John Coleman felt the decision to dismiss the 22-year-old was a harsh one and Barlaser is keen to get back into action when the Reds host Scunthorpe United on Saturday.

"The only good thing is that I can play Saturday, so it’s only one game," he said. "I wanted to play Tuesday, but these things happen in football. Luckily, we’ve got a Tuesday game so I can be back for Saturday."

The Reds have dropped to 15th in the table and are without a league win since Boxing Day and Barlaser believes the next few weeks will be key to Stanley's season.

"It’s tight towards the bottom and the top, if we get a win on Tuesday and Saturday then we’re back towards the top 10 and maybe play-offs. It’s a massive couple of weeks for us," the midfielder added.

"We’ll take a lot from (the Derby game) because we’re in League One, we’re out now though so the league is massive."