Fleetwood Town head coach Joey Barton explains Paddy Madden substitution at Coventry City

Fleetwood Town's Paddy Madden
Fleetwood Town's Paddy Madden

Joey Barton reflected on the fine margins of being a manager after admitting Fleetwood Town’s loss in midweek left him feeling a bit foolish.

The Cod Army were beaten by Coventry City despite taking the lead inside the opening 10 minutes of the contest through Paddy Madden.

The Town boss then made the decision to substitute his in-form striker during the game, although the Fleetwood top scorer had squandered further opportunities.

Nevertheless, Barton said fine lines come with the territory.

“They’d switched to a back three and we wanted to get some balance to it,” he explained.

“It was literally right before they scored; disappointed with that, Pads probably unlucky.

“He should have had a hat-trick; he’s missed an easy chance and then, for some reason, tried to chip the keeper when he was on his line.

“But he’s been fantastic for us and gets another goal from following in.

“Sometimes you make tactical changes hoping that it comes off and you get back in the game.

“They’d just scored and we felt we had to compensate for them playing the wing-back system.

“In hindsight, having watched the game back, I may make a different decision but at the time, in the moment, I felt it was the best way for us to go on and win the game.

“It’s on me as the manager, that’s my responsibility.

“When it comes off you look like a genius, when it doesn’t come off you look like an idiot.

“And tonight, I might be a bit of an idiot.”

The Cod Army were left to rue missed opportunities despite both Madden and Ched Evans playing their part.

However, Barton would rather chances be missed as opposed to not being created.

“The lads usually put them away,” he said.

“Paddy’s had a chance to go top scorer in the division and he’s missed some chances that he usually puts away.

“The main thing is we’re creating them, I’d be more worried if we weren’t creating any chances.

“I’m confident with our players, if they get in that position more often than not over the course of the season, they’ll end up in the back of the net.

“Disappointed tonight because if we’d got that second goal it probably puts the tie beyond Coventry.”