Wes Burns is happy to become Fleetwood Town’s wing-back man
Wes Burns admitted he has been taken by surprise at how well he has adapted to his new role in Fleetwood Town’s starting line-up.
The 24-year-old started the season as an attacker but, after right-back Lewie Coyle picked up a red card in January’s draw at Rochdale, Burns was asked to fill his role in the back four.
Last time out, Burns played at wing-back with Coyle in a back three as Town saw off Plymouth Argyle at Highbury.
Speaking ahead of Saturday’s trip to Accrington Stanley, Burns said: “I think, going forward, if you were to put a gun to my head and say ‘what position do you want to play?’ I’d probably favour that right wing-back, right-back role.
“It gives me a lot of freedom when we have got the ball to pick it up from deep and drive at players which is what I like to do.
“It is about that bit of work defensively that I will work on with Clint Hill (first team coach).
“I still need to have this conversation with the manager (Joey Barton) for next year (about the future).
“I think, going forward, for me right-back/ right wing-back is ideal. I think that is where I will play.
“In a 4-3-3 that we have been playing, it is a little bit different because I know that I am the right-back and there is nothing behind me.
“In a 3-5-2 I know Lewie is there as a right cente-half.
“When we are attacking, the way we play, the left wing-back will then tuck round into a back four.
“I know Lewie will be there to cover me so I can push on and be a little bit more aggressive.
“That 3-5-2 that we played last game suited me down to the ground.
“A little – but less – defensive responsibilities and a little bit more attacking responsibilities is perfect for me.
“The gaffer has played me in all sorts of positions this year and I’m enjoying the experience of playing everywhere.
“It is not a bad thing to be able to play a few positions.”
Nevertheless, Burns admitted it was a shock to be starting at right-back when Town won 3-0 at AFC Wimbledon in their first game following Coyle’s Rochdale red card.
He said: “When I was told I was playing it at Wimbledon I was a bit like ‘I think my name is in the wrong place there!’
“It is just learning on the job. I’m happy to play anywhere.
“Then again, I had a really good game at Wimbledon and I thought ‘I can actually play right-back here!’
“It was a weird one but sort of a surprise too.”