Jack Sowerby says Jamie Vardy is an inspiration to all as the former Town hero is set to make his Highbury return with Leicester City.
Vardy rifled in 30-plus goals to fire Town from the Conference to League Two in the 2011-12 seasonand clinched a £1m switch.
Now five years on, a Premier League title and several England caps later Vardy is set to return to the Fylde coast – but only if he is fit.
The forward’s fairytale FA Cup third round return is in doubt due to a groin niggle.
Vardy’s journey through non-league from Stocksbridge Park Steels to Halifax, Town and then a leap to Leicester is a fabled one.
And Sowerby, who himself came from non-league side Squires Gate before making his Football League debut for Fleetwood in League One in 2015, hopes lightning strikes twice and he or some of his talented team-mates can follow in the forward’s footsteps.
He said: “It is the history of it, everyone has heard about it, everyone talks about it.
“He came from non-league and then to the Premier League so he is an inspiration to all of us young players.
“I do look up to him, I’m in a similar situation to him. I’m still young, I just hope I can keep improving and get to the higher level.”
It has been a busy start to the transfer window for Town with loanee Aiden O’Neill heading back to Burnley.
O’Neill joined the club on a season-long loan deal in August with the option of a January recall
He had not featured in Town’s matchday squad after coming off at half-time during Town’s 2-0 defeat to Gillingham; nor has Bournemouth loanee Baily Cargill with a decision expected on his future.
Fleetwood head coach Uwe Rosler said: “I’d like to thank Aiden for his efforts whilst at Fleetwood Town and wish him all the best for the future.”
And O’Neill also parted on good terms, wishing Rosler’s 11th-placed side luck.
He Tweeted: “Thanks to everyone associated with Fleetwood Town for making me feel so welcome during my time at Fleetwood. Best of luck to all for the rest of the season.”
That departure came after speculation surrounding tow of Town’s under contract players Amari’i Bell and Devante Cole.
Rosler praised the in-demand duo 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 Monday’s 2-1 home defeat to Bradford.
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.”