Joey Barton doesn’t expect any surprises from Fleetwood Town’s trip to AFC Wimbledon

Fleetwood Town head coach Joey Barton believes he knows what to expect when they make the trip to AFC Wimbledon this weekend.

Friday, 7th February 2020, 11:45 am
Updated Friday, 7th February 2020, 11:50 am
Fleetwood Town keeper Alex Cairns

Town come up against the Dons tomorrow on the back of a win over Doncaster Rovers last week.

Wimbledon are currently fighting to stave off the threat of relegation, although they do sit six points clear of the drop.

In contrast, the Cod Army will hope to close the gap on Portsmouth who occupy the final play-off spot.

Barton said: “I’m going to compete against Glyn Hodges (Wimbledon boss) on Saturday, I’ve competed against him before.

“I know his team, I know how they play, I think I know what I’m going to expect.

“He might throw a few curveballs in there but I’m very, very confident going in with what we’ve got.

“I’ve watched them over the last couple of days so I know what they’re doing.

“I know what they did last time out against Accrington, they played four at the back and were really poor so I’d be surprised if they don’t revert to 5-3-1-1 like he normally does.

“It’s like playing chess, we have all these manoeuvres and we’re playing against people who also want to in.

“He’s desperate to get three points on Saturday and his players are desperate to beat our players.

“It’s going to be a really competitive League One fixture and it’s only one that we can prepare for as well as we can, we prepare superbly well for everyone.

“If we win it, then fantastic, we’ll have earned it. If they win, hats off to them.”

Fleetwood may be without keeper Alex Cairns, who has been absent for most of the week with his wife due to give birth.

Barton said: “We are OK, the only concerns we’ve got is Cairnsy’s wife is due to give birth and she hasn’t done that as yet.

“Hopefully we’ll get Al back but he hasn’t been in all week, so there could be a goalie change for Saturday,

“Biggo (Harrison Biggins) is about to get a face mask on but hopefully the face mask will allow him to come back into contact.

“We go into it with (Barrie) McKay and (Isak) Thorvaldsson coming into a squad that was a little bit young I thought at the weekend.

“Where we’ve been light in those midfield roles, they give us the reinforcements we’ve been looking for.”