Paul Coutts and Sam Finley reunited with former Fleetwood boss Joey Barton at Bristol Rovers

Ex-Fleetwood Town captain Paul Coutts has found a new home under his old boss.

Friday, 28th May 2021, 8:00 am

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Coutts and fellow former Town midfielder Sam Finley have made the move to Bristol Rovers, now managed by former Highbury head coach Joey Barton

Barton took charge at Rovers in February but was unable to prevent them being relegated from League One.

Paul Coutts made his final Highbury appearance for Fleetwood Town against Portsmouth in January

Coutts was released by the Cod Army this summer after two seasons and more than 60 appearances, having been made skipper by Barton.

After being one of Town’s key performers in the early part of the season, Coutts spent the second half of it on loan at Salford City.

A clause in the 32-year-old’s contract meant it was financially prudent to move him on.

He was also a key figure with the Ammies but has been persuaded to rejoin Barton on a one-year-deal.

Finley joins him at the Memorial Stadium, having spent one season at Highbury.

After Simon Grayson’s arrival at the end of January, the 28-year-old struggled to find a starting spot in a settled side.

On signing for the Gas, Finley called Barton the best manager he had worked with.

Joining the former Town pair at Rovers is another player with Fylde coast connections. Nick Anderton, who heads south after 18 months at Carlisle, previously spent two-and-a-half years at Blackpool.

The defender was captain at Brunton Park but lost his place in the side to former Preston North End man Jack Armer towards the end of the season.

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