John Coleman admits that the January transfer window has been the toughest he has had to deal with.
Stanley have lost six of their loan players this month, with short-term deals for Nick Anderton, Connor Hall and Michael Ihiekwe expiring, and Matthew Platt, Luke Charman and Connor Ripley recalled by their parent clubs.
Goalkeeper Ripley was recalled by Middlesbrough ahead of joining Preston North End on a permanent deal yesterday.
The Stanley boss said: “These are testing times, but that’s sometimes the fun of being involved in football – when you come through them and when you get what you want.
“It’s been tough, probably the toughest transfer window that I’ve had. You’re losing players that you don’t expect to lose and it is a really difficult scenario, but that’s your job.
“It is frustrating when you lose players, there’s no getting away from it. When you’re not aware of what’s going on it’s doubly frustrating.
“The thing that always brightens you up is that you go into the dressing room and you see a great set of lads who are full of beans, full of life.
“The depressing thing for me at the moment is the loan situation where you’re restricted in how many you can play. January’s a difficult place to get permanent signings – people are getting released for a reason.
“But I’m still mindful of the fact that I want to try sign permanent players. I want players who feel an identity to Accrington Stanley, who get what we’re about, who get the way we play, who enjoy the way we play and can add value to what we’ve got. That’s my big task in the next two or three weeks.
“Hopefully there will be better news in the coming week and we’ll get a couple more over the line, settle the squad again and go into the second part of the season.”