COD ARMY CAN’T FIND THE NET...
UWE ROSLER admits tension is creeping in after injury-hit Fleetwood were held to their second consecutive goalless draw, this time at Bury.
The Cod Army’s promotion charge has stalled after stalemates against Wimbledon and Bury, though Fleetwood did come closest at Gigg Lane when Kyle Dempsey hit the post.
But with several players on the comeback trail, including captain Nathan Pond, Rosler hopes Fleetwood will find some momentum in the season’s final games.
“It is a human thing that, when you get so close at the end of the season, people start to look at the table and that’s sometimes not helpful,” Rosler admitted.
“It’s better to concentrate on our own performance. It was not the best – they were digging deep. In the first half, I don’t think either team wanted to make a mistake.
“But what makes me optimistic is the players coming back. What they’ll bring is a lot of energy, and a lot of willingness to show themselves, and that can work in our favour. Then we are a different proposition.”
Chances were scarce in the firsthalf as neither team managed to build momentum, though Alex Cairns saved from James Vaughan on 36 minutes when the striker pounced on Ashley Eastham’s stray pass.
Dempsey was inches away from firing Fleetwood ahead with practically the last kick of the half, drilling a low left-footed shot across goal which bounced clear off the inside of the post.
Vaughan had another big chance on 59 minutes, getting behind the defence to meet Jermaine Pennant’s free-kick, but he headed well over.
At the other end, Fleetwood sub Ashley Hunter did well to fashion a shooting chance on 82 minutes, but his shot across goal did not trouble Joe Murphy.
Bury finished strongest, with Hallam Hope dragging wide after Jacob Mellis’s clever reverse pass in the 84th minute, and Cairns turned Greg Leigh’s shot wide three minutes later.
And Bury boss Lee Clark admitted the disappointment his players felt at not getting the breakthrough speaks volumes of their renewed ambition.
“The dressing room was really quiet, so I’m really happy about that – they obviously have high standards themselves,” Clark said. “They weren’t coming looking for a point. “I am disappointed – but don’t take away from the fact we’ve just gone toe-to-toe with a very good Fleetwood team, more than held our own against them and probably finished strongest. “But if you can’t win the game, you don’t lose it. “Four clean sheets on the bounce show we have momentum as a defensive unit.”
TUSSLE: Bury’s Kean Bryan and Fleetwood’s Bobby Grant battle for the ball
EYES ON PRIZE: Joe Davis and Tom Pope