It’s time for a u-turn on the road

Alexander - on the Cup trail

Alexander - on the Cup trail

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Fleetwood boss Graham Alexander has made it clear it’s time to address his side’s away form but will take nothing for granted against League Two Cambridge.

Town take on Richard Money’s league new boys on Saturday looking to halt a run of six straight defeats away from Highbury.

It’s a record Alexander knows needs correcting – Town’s manager making it clear he isn’t shying away from the problem.

“I think it’s the same opportunity we’ve had in all the other away games.

“There’s nothing going in our favour except the league status. But we should know more than anyone, having beaten four League One clubs in cup competitions last year, that means nothing.

“We’re not going to focus on this game to fix our away form more than any other.

“We’ll treat it the same as the last away game at Preston North End and have the same determination to get a result.

“We’re not going down there to banish any fears of being away - we’re going there to get into the next round.

“It would be a welcome result, I’m not going to shy away from that.

“We’ve not had the result we feel we should have but we have to look at the part we’ve played in that and put that right.”

The FA Cup presents a huge incentive for clubs like Fleetwood Town should they make it beyond the early rounds.

Memories of Blackpool’s FA Cup visit to Highbury, three-seasons-ago, are still fresh in the mind for many.

Alexander believes lower league clubs can set up their own showpiece games but he won’t be letting his mind wander onto such things.

“We’ve got to get past this game, that’s all we’re thinking about.

“But this is a great competition for lower league clubs.

“The final is probably beyond us, but you can set up your own cup finals.

“They are fantastic occasions when you’re a player.

“We want a piece of that but we have to get through this one first.

“You can only think of the round you’re playing.”

Alexander will be without striker David Ball for the trip to Cambridge – the former Manchester City man is sidelined for up to four months with a broken leg.

Jamie Proctor returns from suspension to bolster the numbers up front with Tom Hitchcock also available having been granted permission to play by parent club Milton Keynes Dons.

“It was the first thing I asked (MK boss) Karl Robinson when we spoke about the deal,” said Alexander.

“We’re very grateful to them and with Bally out it’s a welcome one for us.”

Also returning from suspension is Steven Schumacher who faces competition from Keith Southern for his place.

Alexander doesn’t see having the pair compete for the holding midfield spot as a problem.

“It’s what we want,” he said.

“It’s a headache when you’re struggling for numbers not when you’ve got two good players competing for a place.

“It’s not a given that because Keith played well he keeps the shirt.

“I believe players build up credit if they play well.

“I’m not going to punish someone for a suspension or a niggle. You have to think about the game too.

“It’s a choice we’re going to have to consider.”