Joey Barton: Hard work needed to break bad habits at Fleetwood Town

Joey Barton hopes his Fleetwood Town side will start to enjoy better luck
Joey Barton hopes his Fleetwood Town side will start to enjoy better luck

Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton says his players have a lot of  work to do on the training ground this week ahead of their Highbury clash with Burton Albion.

READ MORE: Joey Barton calls on Fleetwood players not to hide injuries
Town lost their fifth straight away game in League One 2-0 at Luton Town on Saturday, though they are unbeaten in five at home.

There will be a chance for some players to push their case for first-team selection this afternoon when Town’s development squad head to Macclesfield Town for a Central League Cup tie (1pm).

With Wes Burns (hamstring), Lewie Coyle (ribs), James Wallace (calf) and James Husband (hamstring) all doubts for Saturday, Town’s youngsters and fringe first-teamers can stake a claim today.

Barton remains confdient his squad are on the right track, saying: “(The job has) Definitely added a few more grey hairs, especially with what went on on Saturday, but we are fine. We know where we are going and what we want to do.

“Habits are hard to break – it does take a period of time. Yes, it would be great if people took it on board and kept it for the whole of the season, but we know we have to keep reinforcing those messages.

“We have lots to do on the training ground but nothing we did not know before Saturday’s game.”

And Barton bemoaned his lack of luck, with injuries and referees, adding: “It is not ideal to have two starters (Burns and Coyle) miss the game through injury, having to make changes off the back of two wins. Conor McAleny drops out through no fault of his own.

“Tactically we had to adjust to deal with a very good side in Luton. You always want your players fit and ready for action but I felt we were more than capable with the team we put out.

“Five or six minutes in it is up in the air (when Husband is injured). As a manager you just have to accept that sometimes things conspire against you. That is football.

“As much as you think you know everything about it, sometimes you still need a bit of luck and the rub of the green.

“I’m always moaning about refs and fourth officials. On Saturday we ran into some strange refereeing.

“I am learning a lot of things about refereeing at this level.”

Fleetwood’s FA Cup third round clash at home to AFC Wimbledon has been confirmed for Saturday, January 5 with a 3pm kick-off.