Fleetwood Town are once again coming to terms with a striker crisis as Jamie Proctor faces a lengthy ban for his FA Cup red mist moment.
The striker only returned from suspension for Saturday’s defeat at Cambridge United and now faces up to four matches on the sidelines having earned a straight red for lashing out at Richard Tait.
With David Ball out for up to four months with a broken leg, Jamille Matt potentially off limits until the end of the season with serious ligament damage and Liam McAlinden recalled to Wolves, Town have just Stephen Dobbie and Tom Hitchcock available for Saturday’s trip to Yeovil.
It doesn’t bode well for boss Graham Alexander, who will be desperate to end a run of seven straight away defeats.
He admitted luck hasn’t been on his side when it comes to forward players but pledged to make the most of what he has at his disposal.
“We’ll have to deal with it and see what happens,” he told The Gazette. “It’s not going well for us up front with strikers and their availability.
“That’s four out for us now, with Jamille Matt, David Ball, Liam McAlinden gone back and now Proc missing for three games – it might even be four because it’s his second suspension.
“We have to make sure now we concentrate on the players who are available.
“It’s now about getting the best team we possibly can together for Yeovil and going down there to win the game.”
Alexander knows his players must bounce back quickly from Saturday’s FA Cup exit, sealed by Kwesi Appiah’s 80th- minute winner.
He knows his side were well below their best at the Abbey Stadium and wants no repeat as Fleetwood head to Huish Park.
Ironically the Somerset ground is where Town secured their most famous FA Cup victory – a second-round win over Yeovil three years ago to set up their famous third round showdown with Blackpool .
Alexander said: “We have to look at why we turned in a below average performance on Saturday. We can’t just brush it under the carpet and write it off as one of those days.
“I don’t like that phrase, ‘one of those days’.
We have to try and work out why what happened happened and put it right.
“That’s what we have to do right now.”
And the Fleetwood manager insists he’ll accept no excuses, making it clear his side got exactly what they deserved at the Abbey Stadium.
“It’s always a concern if you don’t play well and you get beaten, no matter what recent run you’ve been on,” he continued.
“On numerous occasions away from home we’ve played very well and been on the wrong end of results.
“I don’t think we can say that about Saturday. I’ll hold my hands up if we get beaten and deserve to, and we deserved to get beaten on Saturday. It’s something we have to put right. We’ve got a tough away game again this weekend and we’re looking for a big improvement.”