Burns back in the goals as Town’s development squad beat FC United

Fleetwood Town's Wes Burns
Fleetwood Town's Wes Burns

Fleetwood forward Wes Burns ended his year-long goal drought to net the winner in Town’s 2-1 friendly win over non-league side FC United last night.

The last time Burns rippled the back of the net was for Aberdeen last July when he scored in the their 3-0 home win over Ventspils in a Europa League qualifying clash.

That was to be the 22-year-old’s only goal for the Scottish side and after ending that loan spell in January he sealed a permanent switch from Championship side Bristol City back to Highbury.

Burns had enjoyed a successful loan spell at Town at the end of the 2015/16 campaign as his five goal, 12 game spell helped the club win their relegation battle and stay in League One.

When the Welshman returned to Highbury Town faced a different type of battle at the top end of the table but his return was hampered by a foot injury sustained in the 0-0 home draw with Rochdale in February.

The forward recovered for the final month of the campaign but did not manage to grab his first league goal of the campaign, his last league effort was during that blistering loan stay in Town’s 2-0 win over Peterborough in April 2016.

But now the forward is back firing on all cylinders and showed he has not lost his clinical touch in front of goal as he popped up with an 83rd minute winner at Broadhurst Park.

Town head coach Uwe Rosler was watching from the stands as Burns and fellow forward Ash Hunter gave him some food for thought as they got some more minutes under their belts for Paul Murray’s development squad ahead of the season opener against Rotherham on Saturday.

The duo are vying with Bobby Grant, Devante Cole and new boys Jordy Hiwula, Conor McAleny for a starting spot on Saturday.

And both did their chances no harm as they played the full game and bagged a goal apiece.

Burns was instrumental in Hunter’s opener as he pressed the National League North side and won the ball back before teeing-up Hunter to slide the ball home in the ninth minute.

Hunter and development squad prodigy Ashley Nadesan both rattled the woodwork with centre-half Harvey Rodgers also testing Lloyd Allinson with a fierce effort from distance.

It was not all Town in the first 45 as Nathan Lowe beat Town youngster Billy Crellin but his effort crashed into the bar.

And it was Lowe that did the damage as he levelled for the hosts just 26 seconds into the second half.

Nadesan flicked on Godswill Ekpolo’s effort but he was thwarted by Allison with Town’s left wing-back Joe Maguire fizzing the ball just past the right post after he skipped in behind the hosts defence.

Those chances woke FC United up and danger man Lowe hit the woodwork once again as his 30-yard free-kick clattered into the post.

But it was to be Town’s day as Burns popped up to slide the ball home from a corner in the 83rd minute to seal a deserved win for the development squad.

Fleetwood: Crellin, Ekpolo, Maguire, Rodgers, Sheron, Higham, Sowerby, Biggins, Burns, Nadesan (Donohue, 80), Hunter. Subs not used: Reid, Baines, Duckworth.