John Coleman has revealed Accrington Stanley have opened talks with winger Piero Mingoia about a new contract.

The 23-year-old former Watford player is out of contract in the summer but is the Reds top scorer with seven goals this season.

He has established a regular place in the Stanley team and Coleman recently picked him out as is favourite player due to his passion, energy and wholehearted performances.

Coleman said: “Piero is out of contract and we are in the process of offering him a new deal. He is the only player we have started talks with although we will be speaking to others soon.”

The Reds boss is keen to develop players either from the Stanley Academy and youth team, with Max Hazeldine, Kealan Steenson and Keenan Quansah all offered pro deals this week, but also young players who have been released by higher league clubs.

“We want to develop our own players and also players who are deemed cast offs by other clubs who are still young enough to develop,” said Coleman.

“They should use us as a springboard to go onto better things and we have never stood in anyone’s way.

“Saying that, if we develop players, we should be rewarded. Over the last 10 years it hasn’t been a level playing field and similar players have gone for three times the money from other clubs than from Accrington Stanley.

“Now we should be standing our ground and waiting for what the player is worth than let people take advantage of us. We won’t be bullied.

“We want players here who are hungry, they don’t get a great deal of money, but they can get their rewards elsewhere, we can motivate them and promote the team spirit, and what Jimmy and myself have been good at over the years is getting players to play for each other and then see where it takes you.

“If players play well enough to go, we will pat them on the back but instead of patting them on the back for a small fee now we won’t be.”

He added: “For the three who have just signed, we will get them involved in the squad between now and the end of the season to prepare them for the challenge of next season.”