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Barton looks ahead to big clash with Blackpool

6 December 2019

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Fleetwood Town head coach Joey Barton spoke to the media on Friday ahead of the upcoming Fylde Coast derby at Blackpool on Saturday.

The Cod Army travel to Bloomfield Road looking to make history by winning at the home of The Seasiders for the first time.

Both sides are in good form, with Barton’s team having won their last five matches in all competitions.

See below the key quotes from Barton’s press conference at Poolfoot Farm.

On what to expect…

“We go there this year with a good football team. We know we are a good side, and we will see what they have got about them.

“There is not much separating us both in the league. I know they have played more games than us, but there is not much between us in the table.

“They are a side that is a good competitive League One outfit. Simon [Grayson] has got them well organised. You can see what they can create and what they are trying to do. It is another fantastic opportunity for us to go there and show our qualities as a team.

“I think they are a similar side to what they were last year. It is a derby game, hopefully it will be a good crowd and we are looking forward to what I hope will be a good game of football. It looks like the pitch is in a better state than it was when we went there, last year.

“It is a good test for us, if we are serious about mounting a challenge for promotion, you have to go to Blackpool who are no mugs and get a result, but we acknowledge that they have taken some decent points [of good teams this season].

“They are difficult to beat, they are never out of a contest and we are going to have to be the best version of ourselves, and perform.”

On the Fylde Coast derby…

“The biggest focus for us is on the biggest derby in world football, which is the Fylde Coast derby!

“We were very unfortunate last season at their place, we conceded a very last minute goal, which prompted scenes of wild jubilation from the Blackpool fans.

“I think they ran onto the pitch and for a set of fans that don’t consider us as a legitimate derby for them, it was nice to see the release of that excessive emotion.

“It is a different feel, because everyone in the local area will believe it has a lot more riding on it, because it is about the local bragging rights.

“For us as a football team, we prepare for it like any other game and I’m sure it would be the same for them.

“It will be whoever can handle the occasion, the atmosphere and the intensity of a derby that will come out on top.”

On the potential club record…

“We will go there with the chance for the lads to take a bit of history for themselves.

“They have done a few things here for them to be the first to do something, and they have the chance this weekend to be the first Fleetwood side to win at Blackpool.

“It is going to be tough, they will have to earn it. Any accomplishment will be very much sought after from our players.

“But, I expect Blackpool to want to defend the same record, with everything they have got from a physical perspective.”

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