Grecians disappoint at Stanley
PUBLISHED: 10:00 27 March 2009 | UPDATED: 08:50 18 June 2010
Whichever way you look at it, last weekend's Exeter City result was disappointing, writes Dave Edwards-Hughes.
Whichever way you look at it, last weekend's Exeter City result was disappointing. The reports from Sidmouth's travelling fans and the official statistics both tell the same story - put simply, the Grecians did not perform at all well away at the Fraser Eagle Stadium.For both teams there was, indeed, all to play for. City, following the home win against fellow promotion hopefuls Bradford City, were expecting to overcome Accrington Stanley who were expecting to rescue themselves from potential relegation. As it was, the Grecians suffered a 2-1 defeat and Stanley battled back from behind to beat the promotion-chasing Grecians and, in the process, virtually guaranteed their own survival with a thoroughly deserved three points. There should have been alarm bells for those who study form prior to the game as Stanley had 37 points and 37 goals from 37 games and had taken seven points from their last three games. But they have never taken more than nine from any four-game period since their promotion! They were also hoping to break a four-month run since their last win on a Saturday, despite having secured four victories since then. The travelling red and white army could have been forgiven for having heaps of optimism. And they had a blistering start, with a corner in just 17 seconds leading to a Troy Archibald-Henville header being well-saved by Stanley's Kenny Arthur. Next, a big boot downfield caught the Accrington defence out and they were relieved to see Craig McAllister steer a shot wide. On five minutes, Matty Gill threaded a pass through for Adam Stansfield to run on and give the Grecians the lead. Even then it could have been better, as Marcus Stewart saw an exocet of a volley charged down by Charnock as City played the game deep in Stanley territory. The Accrington "Reds" had notched just one win against any of the promotion chasers this season and, after their great start to the game, Grecian hearts and minds must have been brimming with expectation. Thoughts of a victorious, joyous journey home to Devon were shaping up. Well, unfortunately, the only shaping that followed was that done by Accrington as they contrived to carve up City for a very well-deserved victory. A Peter Cavanagh corner in the 34th minute found John Miles who curled a shot into the roof of the net to get the home side back on level terms and Liverpool loanee Craig Lindfield scored the winner.l East Devon Grecians were boosted on Monday by a visit from Steve Basham and Troy Archibald-Henville, who entertained around 50 fans in the War Memorial Club, answering any questions thrown at them, and then chatting with fans. They both shared their disappointment over the weekend's result.l Exeter, still on 61 points, have moved down to 6th position, still comfortably within the play off zone and only three points off an automatic promotion place. l This Saturday, Grecians travel to the Spotland Stadium, home of Rochdale FC, hoping to complete the double over the side, having won 4-1 at home.