Fleetwood Town head coach Joey Barton spoke to the media on Thursday ahead of this weekend’s Sky Bet League One fixture against Shrewsbury Town at Highbury.
The Cod Army are back at home this Saturday and take on Sam Ricketts’ Shrewsbury, following the 1-0 defeat at Burton Albion last weekend.
Fleetwood are unbeaten in their last six home league games and will be looking to continue that against the Salops on Saturday.
Here’s what Barton had to say:
On the opposition…
“It is a very tough game; you’d probably want to play a side a little lower in confidence than them because they will be buoyed off knocking a Championship side out of a cup.
“Sam [Ricketts] is quite consistent in his team shape and selection. We went down there, and I thought in the second half we were very good and then deservedly won the game relatively straightforwardly.
“It will be a tough test for us as they will be coming here after keeping a clean sheet, and I think the first goal will be key. If we get it, it will be a change of scenery for them because they will have to come out and be a bit more offensive, and if they get it then they will be tough to break down.
On the squad fitness…
“We are all good, most of the lads that had knocks and bruises from last time out have hopefully come through that. We have had a few that have missed the early part of training this week but are expected to join back in today.
“All being well, they should be fit for the weekend, which gives us, apart from Jordan Rossiter, a full compliment.”
On being back at Highbury…
“It’s good to be back at home. I love the games coming thick and fast, but I am not so sure that the players and their bodies do because it is a huge strain on them.
“We are into cup final football now, where we have to win every single game because every league game for us, in essence, is a cup final. We have got to get ourselves winning games and moving in the right direction.
“Usually at home, we have been a very good side and we need to get back on that upward trajectory.
“It has been good to have worked with the lads all week, it feels strange to have a Saturday to Saturday game. It is great for us because you get to implement certain things that you want to see in the performance.”