Rosler tells Town April is the biggest month

Fleetwood Town head coach Uwe Rosler
Fleetwood Town head coach Uwe Rosler

Uwe Rosler says this month is the most important of the campaign with six games to go to clinch either an automatic promotion spot or a play-off place.

Town started April with a 1-0 home defeat to Swindon Town and head to Oxford United hoping to bounce back and edge closer to their 74-point target.

That points tally has been the highest average point mark needed to clinch the last play-off spot in three out of the last five campaigns.

Rosler said: “I think now the games are queuing up and I said, seven months ago, April will be the most important month and that is exactly how it will be.”

And Rosler says recovery is key going into the game at Oxford, who are also vying for promotion.

He said: “For me it is more important how we recover, how the mental stage of our players are going into Oxford

“They are a direct competitor to us.

“It will be a difficult game, they have a lot to play for, we have a lot to play for and hopefully we will bring a similar performance like we had in the first half (against Swindon) because there were a lot of good things.”

Fleetwood were boosted by the return of striker Wes Burns (ankle) who made a 25-minute cameo after starting on the bench alongside fellow returning duo skipper Nathan Pond (knee) and Martyn Woolford (knee).

Markus Schwabl missed the Swindon clash after limping off in the 0-0 draw at Bury last month to join striker Devante Cole (groin), midfielder Jimmy Ryan (foot) and keeper Chris Neal (hand) as a doubt for tonight’s clash.

One player not in the treatment room is Amari’i Bell with Rosler stating it was a tactical substitution to replace the reported Premier League transfer target with the score locked at 0-0 against Swindon.

West Ham United and Swansea City are reportedly monitoring the 22-year-old defender who has another year left on his contract but he was brought off in the 68th minute with Joe Maguire making only his second appearance after sealing a January switch from Liverpool.

Maguire filled in for Bell when he missed the 2-0 win at Scunthorpe due to injury but impressed in a development squad game against Championship side Preston North End last week.

Rosler said: “I wanted more power on that side, I wanted more crosses in and Joe Maguire played really well against Preston the other day and he played at Scunthorpe really well when he started the game and gave us a lot of attacking emphasis against Scunthorpe and that is why I brought him on; I wanted more crosses, I wanted to win the game.”

Oxford lost 2-1 in Sunday’s EFL Trophy final to Coventry City but with a more than seven point gap between themselves and the last play-off spot U’s boss Michael Appleton called the Town clash ‘massive’.

The ex-Blackpool boss said: “It’s a tall order for us now, with only six games to go.

“From a belief point of view, if we can get the three points on tonight, then who knows.

“It’s a tough game against a decent Fleetwood side, but the players’ frustration is the same as mine and we’ve just got to shake it off.

“Footballers are pretty resolute and they bounce back pretty quickly.

“There’s still an opportunity and tonight now becomes massive.”