REACTION: Joey Barton reflects on Fleetwood Town 2 Rochdale 2

Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton's quest for a first league win at Highbury was thwarted by Rochdale's Ian Henderson.

Saturday, 18th August 2018, 7:13 pm
Updated Saturday, 18th August 2018, 7:20 pm
Ched Evans scored for Fleetwood again

And the Town boss was left unhappy with the officials and referee Dean Whitestone in his post match press.

Henderson had twice levelled for Rochdale, the attacker cancelling out Paddy Madden's 26th minute strike from the spot in the second half then popping up in injury time.

The 'Dale attacker had been bundled over by Craig Morgan for that 50th minute penalty, Ched Evans then putting Fleetwood back ahead in the 56th minute.

But Barton was unhappy with the officiating at the final whistle.

The new Town boss felt the referee did not make the right call when Wes Burns was one-on-one with Josh Willis in the 87th minute.

The keeper appearing to handle the ball outside his box.

The score was locked at 2-1 then but Barton feels his men need to put the result to bed to avoid refereeing decisions impacting the result.

Speaking about the fiery nature of the game at Highbury he said: "It was just one of those games, Cian Bolger has lost a couple of teeth.

"The officials missed key things.

You have a one-on-one with the keeper, he comes out of the box, handles the ball and the referee decides it hits his chest.

"You have got four officials in the stadium and the fourth official clearly felt the same as us.

"They are big decisions.

"I don't want to moan about referees, I understand they have a really difficult job to do but you have to get the big decisions right.

"We think there is a bit of a foul in the build up on Conor McAleny, he does not give it, you cannot miss the keeper coming out and handling the ball I think everyone in the stadium was aware of that.

"We are disappointed but we just have to dust ourselves down and accept there is going to be adversity, things are going to go against you.

"We just need to knuckle down and put the result way beyond any refereeing decision."

Rochdale boss Keith Hill hailed his Mr Dependable Henderson for rescuing a point.

Despite a collision with the advertising board after a tackle from Lewie Coyle Henderson played on and popped up with the late leveller.

And Hill praised his star man for recovering and playing on after what could have been a bad injury.

He said: "I think that was an accident.

"There was no malice from the opponent.

"It was almost like a car crash looking at it.

"He was very lucky not to be seriously hurt because he was mid-waist straight through the advertising boards.

"His flexibility is good there and he got back onto the pitch, I'd already made my subs

"I'm glad he did survive.

"I always can depend on Ian Henderson in times of need and we needed him today."