Fleetwood boss praises in-demand pair

Amari'i Bell was praised for his commitment against Bradford
Amari'i Bell was praised for his commitment against Bradford

Fleetwood Town head coach Uwe Rosler praised in-demand duo Amari’i Bell and Devante Cole for not letting transfer speculation impact their commitment to the cause.

Bell is out of contract at the end of the season and is not expected to sign a new deal anytime soon.

It means Town’s only way of getting money for the 23-year-old is to sell him this month.

Cardiff City have shown an interest in Bell and Town’s League One rivals Blackburn Rovers are the latest club to be linked.

Twelve-goal Cole was nearly sold to Sheffield United on deadline day and, like Bell, started yesterday’s 2-1 home defeat to Bradford.

Speculation still surrounds the Town future of loanees Aiden O’Neill and Baily Cargill, who were left out of the squad for the third game running.

Rosler said: “There is interest in some of our players. I do not know exactly where we are because things are changing hour by hour now.

“At the moment I cannot confirm or not confirm any changes in our squad.

“I would lie if I say there is no interest. There is interest in him (Bell) and in Cole but in the end I will be involved in the decision-making. I think Amari’i Bell was very committed against Bradford.

“He ground out a decent, solid performance over the 90 minutes and you see how committed both players were. Devante Cole put them on the back foot in a lot of situations and I was happy with both of their performances.”

Town took the lead through Jack Sowerby in the 21st minute but should have led by more than one at the break after a sparkling opening.

Alex Gillead equalised on the break after a failed short-corner routine by Town, then Shay McCartan scored the winner from a corner.

Rosler said: “I think it was a very good performance, the best we have had in a long, long time, especially in the first half.

“Unfortunately we were only up 1-0 at the break. We created chances, played good football offensively and defensively. It was very good.

“We knew what was coming second half. I said to just overcome the first 20 minutes because I fancied us in terms of what we had on the bench.

“Bradford put pressure on us but they had only two shots and two goals. The goals were self-inflicted.

“We lost that game. The opposition did not win it –we lost it.

“It was the third game in a week and in general I am happy with two wins from three in the festive period.”