Barton's challenge to five-star Fleetwood: Now keep it up!
Joey Barton saw his Fleetwood team make history with their five-star performance at Scunthorpe but then the head coach laid down the gauntlet, telling Town to keep it up.
Their previous best was a 5-1 success against Swindon in November 2015 and now Barton says the challenge is to maintain those standards, with another away test at Charlton on Saturday.
Two goals each from Ched Evans and Wes Burns made it 4-0 at half-time, Ash Hunter adding the fifth.
Barton is unbeaten on the road as Town boss and said his players’ response to Rochdale’s last-gasp equaliser at Highbury on Saturday was key.
He said: “I thought we were superb, especially to respond to conceding in the 95th minute against Rochdale.
“We were really disapppointed because we felt that was a game we had control of. In the dressing room it felt like we lost.
“The way they responded was first- class. Scunthorpe were in the play-offs last year and had a totally different season to Fleetwood.
“It is a tough place to come to. They have real talent in their side but I felt that if we could impose ourselves on them the opportunities would arise. That is how it panned out.
“The main thing for me was getting a clean sheet. You attack as a team and defend as a team.
“We were first class and the challenge now is to keep that going. We won’t be getting too high or too low.
“It is three points on the board. Yes, it is nice to score goals away from home but we have a really tough fixture at Charlton on Saturday.”
Paddy Madden did not get on the scoresheet against his old club but received praise for his performance alongside Evans, who now has four goals from four games.
Barton shifted to a classic 4-4-2 as Kyle Dempsey missed out due to injury and Cian Bolger for family reasons.
The Town boss added: “We’ve created opportunities and when you have the likes of Ched Evans and Paddy Madden, who was outstanding and did not get a goal, it was a real team performance.
“If we get those two into the team, there are going to be goals with their records.”