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Skipper on track

9 February 2013

Ahead of Fleetwood Town’s visit to Torquay United today, skipper Rob Atkinson has spoken of his belief in the side and how he feels they are back on the right track after some disappointing results at

By Liz Owen

Ahead of Fleetwood Town’s visit to Torquay United today, skipper Rob Atkinson has spoken of his belief in the side and how he feels they are back on the right track after some disappointing results at the start of the year.

The 25-year-old will be leading Town out as captain this weekend for the 10th game since his return from Accrington Stanley, keeping clean sheets in half of them. “We started okay when I came back and then had a couple of defeats, but in the last two matches I thought we were heading in the right direction again, though we were disappointed not to win against Bradford,” Atkinson said. “It’s not going to happen overnight, but we have enough quality here to push forward and challenge at the business end of the season. “We are trying not to look at the table too much at this stage. The key is to take it one game at a time and pick up a few points to get a run of results together. We know how tight it is and that can make a big difference.” “The current back four is settling nicely and the more games you play together, the better your understanding develops,” he added, having lined up alongside Nathan Pond, Shaun Beeley and Alan Goodall in consecutive fixtures. “We’ve had a few clean sheets but we believe defensive unity comes from the whole team and defending as a team is something we work on in training.” Graham Alexander’s appointment as manager breathed new life into Atkinson’s Town career and the defender revealed that every player has been given a clean slate since his arrival. “The new manager has given everyone a chance. A few of us who were not playing have come in and done well. “We are all starting on the same level playing field and we all have the same job of proving we are good enough for the shirt.” And he is relishing the role of captain, with former skipper Steve McNulty’s departure leading to Atkinson being awarded the armband for good. “It was quite a change when I came back,” he said. “I wasn’t in the previous manager’s plans and was loaned to Accrington, then with a change of manager I’ve come back and been given the armband. “It doesn’t really change the way I play but captaincy is something I know all about. It’s a role I had at Grimsby before signing for Fleetwood so I know what it entails. “The main thing is to put the performances in and lead by example. “Obviously I’m thrilled and honoured to be wearing it and I want to repay the manager with good performances which help the team get good results.” Thanks to BEG

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