Joey Barton says hailed his side’s ‘outstanding’ defensive performance as the platform for victory, as Fleetwood Town beat Peterborough United 3-1 on the opening day of the League One season.
Three of Barton’s summer signings; Harry Souttar, Josh Morris and Danny Andrew all scored as the Cod Army got off to a flying start at the Weston Homes Stadium.
The Town boss spoke at full-time about how pleased he was with how his side set the platform defensively, against a potentially tricky opponent.
“The lads have executed what was asked of them during the week superbly,” said Barton.
“They key for us is that we always believed we could win. We had a game plan to win the game, and we knew if we sat back that Peterborough could cause us problems.
“Our game plan was slightly tweaked, and set plays are a massive part of any game so it was nice to start the season with a goal from a set-piece and a direct free-kick.
“The platform was laid with an outstanding defensive performance from the whole team. Credit must go to the players and all the staff – it was so pleasing.”
Ivan Toney had made the game interesting when he pulled a goal back to make it 2-1, but a stunning free-kick from Andrew sealed the game ten minutes from time.
“It was a wonderful free-kick from Danny, which gave us breathing space going into the final stages of the game,” stated Barton.
“In truth I thought we were the better side for large portions of the game, and are perhaps a little disappointed we didn’t create any more chances, but our defensive performance as a team was outstanding.
“That’s why we’ve come to one of the hardest places in League One and won the game.”
Barton reserved credit for returning defender Souttar, who scored the first goal across all League One fixtures today, after just three minutes.
“We’ve worked on getting some new moving patterns for him from corners, because he’s so good in the air.
“Credit must go to the staff and everyone at the club for that, especially the statistic department who highlight these areas during the week. It’s pleasing to come off the pitch and their work has been rewarded.
“Soutts has been getting a bit of heat the last few days for his choice of haircut… he says it’s the same barber who cut it before the Accrington game last season, and his hairdresser may have to stay the same if he keeps scoring goals!”