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Watch: Joey Barton on Town's EFL Trophy win over Liverpool U21s

25 September 2019

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Fleetwood Town head coach Joey Barton spoke following his sides win over Liverpool's Under 21s at Highbury in the Trophy.

Barton saw his side take the lead against Liverpool through Peter Clarke, who tapped home after a cushioned header down from Ashley Eastham.

Shortly after, the Town defence was broken and the visitors levelled through Neco Williams - who calmly slotted into the bottom corner after good work by Tom Hill. With the match going to penalties for the extra point, the Cod Army came out on top 4-3, with Matt Gilks being the hero goalkeeper.

Joey Barton spoke to the media after the match and here is what he had to say:

On the game…

“The lads managed to win on pens, but we need to be better in lots of regards. There will be some lads in there who will be disappointed that they haven’t been able to show us what they can do, and there is a couple in there who have not taken their chances.

“There was an opportunity tonight to use the younger players and to see if they were capable of making it in and around the first team players, there was one or two who did okay tonight. We got through it with no injuries, and no suspensions this time. Now we focus on the first team and on Shrewsbury.”

On the youth development…

“Tonight we got the opportunity to look at the next generation, and to see how far or how close they are from being first team players. You see them in training, and in the Under 23’s, but it would have been nice to see them against a more experienced Liverpool side.

“I thought Jay Matete was great when he came on. Shayden Morris did well when he came on too, and they both showed what they can do. They have certainly caught the eye having been training with the first team, and this competition (EFL Trophy) is about developing young players for us.”

On the first team’s involvement…

“It was always the plan to give some first team players minutes because they haven't got much time in the league. Peter Clarke and Matt Gilks haven’t been playing recently and tonight they probably didn’t need 90 minutes, but ended up getting 90 minutes.

“Billy Crellin is out on loan at the moment which is aiding his development, and tonight Billy probably would have played, however Gilks had to go in and keep goals for us. I thought he did superb and obviously made a couple of penalty saves which wins it for us, so I am delighted for him. I am pleased for them boys, especially for Clarkey (Clarke) who got the goal.”

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