Stanley keeper remembers Royle rejection

SUBSTITUTED Accrington Stanley goalkeeper James Speare today recalled how Joe Royle had shattered his dreams of stardom.Ex-Everton youngster Speare, 27, suffered fresh heartbreak when he was bizarrely replaced with just a minute of extra time remaining in last night's FA Cup second round replay with Bournemouth at the Interlink Express Stadium.

SUBSTITUTED Accrington Stanley goalkeeper James Speare today recalled how Joe Royle had shattered his dreams of stardom.

Ex-Everton youngster Speare, 27, suffered fresh heartbreak when he was bizarrely replaced with just a minute of extra time remaining in last night's FA Cup second round replay with Bournemouth at the Interlink Express Stadium.

Despite keeping a clean sheet, a disconsolate Speare was hauled off by boss John Coleman and replaced by Jon Kennedy as the Conference outfit prepared for a penalty shoot-out.

The gamble paid off as Accrington won through 5-3 on spot-kicks to earn themselves a home clash with Colchester on January 3.


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Speare said today: "Last night was the worse I've felt since Joe Royle told me he didn't want me at Everton any more.

"He paid £1million for Paul Gerrard, so the writing was on the wall and within a week or two he told me it would be best if I moved on.

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"Joe explained that I would be doing well to play in the reserves, never mind the first team, so I didn't really have much choice."

Speare had spells with Darlington and Irish club Sligo Rovers before joining born-again Stanley, founder members of The Football League but forced to quit through bankruptcy in 1962.

Ipswich boss Royle said today: "That was a very brave thing for the Accrington manager to do and I feel a bit sorry for James.

"The worst thing about management is telling young kids that you are letting them go. It's about breaking hearts and no manager likes doing that.

"But I'm pleased to see James is still making a living out of the game and despite what happened last night he has played a big part in getting his team through.

"That result says it all about the drama of the FA Cup. It's not the first time it has happened and it certainly won't be the last."

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