Jonny Maxted has praised goalkeeping coach Tony Warner in helping make him a better player, and feels the Reds are working hard as a unit to improve.
The 25-year-old had seen his playing time between the sticks limited before Middlesbrough loanee Connor Ripley was recalled and switched to Preston last month.
Stanley’s shot stopper feels his spell on the substitutes bench enabled him to continue his development, and believes the Reds have become more consistent at the back as a result.
“When Tony first came in as goalkeeping coach he spotted little bits in my game that needed improving,” said Maxted.
“I needed to do more talking, be more commanding in the area and work harder towards being that good, commanding ‘keeper that comes for crosses, talks well, kicks well and things like that.
“When Connor came in, I then had that time to work on what I needed to with Tony.
“I think it’s paying off, but I’m always learning. I listen to Tony, he’s got a load of experience, he’s played in the Premier League, and he’s always teaching me. He’s one of the best ‘keeper coaches I’ve ever had to work with because he genuinely cares.”
Since Maxted reclaimed the starting goalkeeper’s spot, the Reds have kept Bristol Rovers and Gillingham at bay, and could have had three clean sheets in as many league games were it not for a controversial added-time penalty at Charlton.
“I’m over the moon to be back playing, and for me now it’s all about keeping up the levels and performances I’ve been putting in and keeping the No. 1 shirt,” said Maxted.
“We’ve been really solid at the back recently. We’ve got the right balance, there’s lots of talking between each other, between me and Yozz [Mark Hughes], and we’ve got trust in each other.
“It’s difficult to put a finger on, but there’s been a lot of hard work behind the scenes. Everyone’s in it together.”
Maxted impressed in goal during Stanley’s last outing against Gillingham, making several superb stops to keep the Reds in the contest, including a great diving save to deny Darren Oldaker’s free kick.
Despite his heroics, Maxted says he’s not after praise.
“I’m really pleased with my performance. It was a tough game to play in with the conditions, really wet, cold and a wind going down the pitch, but it was a really good game to be involved in,” he said.
“The gaffer said to me afterwards that I’d made a few good saves, but there’s ways of doing things like that. You don’t want to be praised too much, and I think I prefer that.
“I don’t want patting on the back or whatever, I’m one of those who takes constructive criticism. A little bit of praise is good, but as I said I’m always learning.
“I am always willing to get better and better, and push myself. If someone says to me ‘I think you can work on this’, I’ll go and work on it. That’s who I am as a character.”