Fleetwood Town in market for midfield boost

Kyle Dempsey
Kyle Dempsey
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Fleetwood Town head coach Uwe Rosler is looking to add a couple of signings to boost his squad next month.

He has been rocked by injuries to key midfielders Jimmy Ryan and Kyle Dempsey.

Ryan is set to undergo minor foot surgery this week, while Dempsey was stretchered off with a badly gashed leg following Matt Preston’s late challenge in Town’s 2-1 win over Walsall on Saturday.

On-loan Huddersfield man Dempsey went to hospital for stitches to the wound on his left knee but was discharged within hours.

Dempsey has returned to the training ground but club sources say it is too early to say how serious the injury is due to swelling.

The latest double blow follows injuries to fellow midfielder Martyn Woolford (knee), Michael Duckworth (groin) and Ash Eastham (jaw), and resulted in Rosler recalling midfielder Nick Haughton from his loan spell at non-league Salford City.

With Town light on bodies in midfield, Rosler is expected to swoop for one or two during the transfer window, but as usual the German kept his cards close to his chest.

He said: “I’m happy with the majority of the squad. We came together under very difficult circumstances three days before the season started but we found a way to play.

“We know each other now – how we train, how we live together, how we play and how we conduct ourselves to be professionals. I enjoy every minute with that group of players.

“The majority of the players I am delighted with, but obviously every club tries to improve their squad and that is exactly what we do, but we don’t look to bring an awful lot of players in.”

Haughton is not eligible to play in tonight’s FA Cup second-round replay with Shrewsbury at Highbury (7.45pm), having been out on loan at the time of the original goalless tie.

Rosler says the carrot of a third-round visit to Championship club Bristol City next month is an added incentive.

He said: “I think it is a draw that gives us possibilities.

“We should first talk about Shrewsbury, but the winning team can measure themselves against a team from the league above us.

“Bristol City is a nice stadium, with a good crowd.For both teams it is a big incentive.

“We have come all this way and we want to finish the job tonight.”

Rosler has backed his team to climb over another hurdle after Dempsey’s disappointing injury.

He said: “I think we all must be allowed to be disappointed about such a bad injury. I really feel for Kyle but today we concentrate on Shrewsbury”

Fleetwood may have snapped up their next number one after signing young goalkeeper Billy Crellin on a three-year professional contract.

Fleetwood-born Crellin has been rewarded for his fine form for the Under-18s. He joined Town’s junior set-up aged eight and has since worked his way through th club’s youth system to earn the offer of a professional contract.

Chairman Andy Pilley says the club look forward to watching Crabtrtee develop.

He said: “We are delighted to have secured the services of Billy for three years. He’s a player we are all really excited by.

“What’s just as exciting is that Billy is a Fleetwood lad and a Fleetwood Town supporter. I’m sure the fans will be delighted to see one of their own signing for the club.

“There’s obviously a lot of hard work ahead for Billy but he’s a player we are looking forward to watching develop into hopefully Fleetwood Town’s number one.”