Fleetwood boss welcomes Hunter headache

Ash Hunter
Ash Hunter

Fleetwood manager Steven Pressley is happy to be given a headache by Ash Hunter and have the youngster prove him wrong.

unter didn’t make the starting 11 for Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Port Vale.

But his aggressive display off the bench caught the eye of the Fleetwood boss, who has big choices to make up front.

And he admits that Hunter, who has repeatedly shown his hunger in front of goal this term in a side struggling to score, makes his selection difficult.

The Town boss said: “It was a big call. I had a big decision to make whether to play Ash or not.

“I’d been thinking about it all week. The kid gave me a real problem. He trained brilliantly.

“He was obviously very disappointed not to start but the pleasing thing was he responded properly.

“He came on with a real intent to show me I’d made the wrong decision. That’s all you can ask of players.”

Hunter is not the only man Pressley is looking to as Fleetwood hunt for the goals to secure their League One survival.

New signing Shola Ameobi made his debut on Saturday.

And Pressley has been impressed with what he offers on the pitch and off.

“He gives us a focal point we can counter from,” said Pressley.

“But it’s not just his performance. “In the dressing room before the game and at half -ime he’s got a voice and he’s a really important character.

“I really believe he’s going to be a brilliant signing for us.”

Ameobi certainly hit the ground running for Town – not something that can be said for Devante Cole, who is yet to really find his feet as a Fleetwood player.

But Pressley believes the former Manchester City man will come up with the goods once he’s up to speed.

He said: “I said to Devante I think the intensity of our work, the way we ask our players to pressure the game, is maybe different to what he’s used to.

“I think it will take time. I think we’ve also got to get him fitter than he has been.

“But we’ll work had with him because we’ve got a really good player there.”

At the back, stand-in defensive pair Stephen Jordan and Marcus Nilsson also caught the eye of the manager as Town kept a second consecutive clean sheet.

“I’m very pleased with them,” said Pressley. “We did a lot of work with that aspect of the team.

“It was good to have a whole week on the training ground, especially with the amount of changes we’ve had to make.

“We managed to work really hard on both the attacking intent and our defensive structure.

“I think Stephen Jordan coming in for the last two games has been immense.

“He gave another brilliant performance on Saturday.

“Marcus Nilsson is still another couple of weeks away from being fully fit but he gave a good account of himself.”

Meanwhile, Nathan Rooney wants to see more consistency from his Fleetwood youth side.

Town’s young guns lost 2-0 to Bury at the weekend, continuing a rollercoaster run of form. Team boss Rooney said: “If we look back over the last five games, we’ve won two, lost two and drawn one.

The boys need to put some consistency together and show they can put back-to-back wins together.

“Having the lads showing us they can put a run together and apply things from the Saturday before is important.”

Rooney’s team travel to Tranmere today (Wednesday).