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Barton: We’ve got another tough fixture against Lincoln City

17 October 2020


Barton: We’ve got another tough fixture against Lincoln City

17 October 2020

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Head coach Joey Barton spoke to the press on Friday afternoon ahead of his side’s Sky Bet League One clash against Lincoln City at Highbury Stadium.

Barton – who has seen his side net seven goals in the last two games – goes into the game after two positive results against both Aston Villa U21 in the EFL Trophy and Hull City in League One last week and will be hoping to continue that run over the weekend.

Fleetwood managed to add three new faces in the closing stages of the transfer window, as full-back Tom Edwards from Stoke City, experienced defender Charlie Mulgrew from Blackburn Rovers and Callum Connolly from Everton all join the side on season-long loan deals.

Here is what Joey had to say ahead of the game:

On recent results…

“We’ve got to be bang at it to get a result against an in-form Lincoln. I text Couttsy [Paul Coutts] early in the morning after I watched the last game back and said that the old team is dead, long live the new team.

“The club’s had a slow start, losing three out of the opening four, but I think we got back to Fleetwood Town football on Friday night, when we won 4-1 but if the score line was 7-1, there wouldn’t have been any complaints.

“We’ve got another tough fixture against Lincoln City, another team who are riding high in the table, and we know that we will have to be in the same ball park, in terms of intensity and quality to get maximum points."

On team selection…

“It’s been easier than the weeks leading up to this one. When you perform at that level, it makes my job relatively easy. There wasn’t much to critique and not much to get upset about.

“We’ve got a couple of bumps and bruises in the squad, with lads coming back from international duty and some new signings coming in, but we’ve got virtually a full complement to select from.

“Games are coming thick and fast and we will have to use the entire squad. Charlie [Mulgrew] comes into the squad, he trained with us today and he looks fit and seems to have looked after himself.

“I don’t think it will take much for him to be ready. It’s just the fact that he needs games. You can do all the work, but nothing replicates the toughness of matches. He looks like he is pretty much there.”

On the transfer window…

“We wanted to bring players in and to get three players in. It gives us a squad that will see us at the top tier of our division, albeit, there is probably nine to ten teams that will be thinking the same way.

“The window is only frustrating because of the results but, you look at the Wimbledon, Rochdale and Peterborough games and we could have turned zero points into seven, maybe nine, points there. It wasn’t abject football as we weren’t being blown away, even though we knew we were a bit short.

“The flip side of that was that we had younger players gaining valuable experience that will stand them in good stead in the years going forward so the opening fixture were a double-edged sword in that way.

“I saw the hard work that was going on in the background, in terms of the recruitment team, the director of football, the CEO and the owner. We were all on the same page and all wanted the same thing, I’ve had nothing but support from them since I joined the football club so we sat down, and I was confident the players would come."

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