Town defender McLaughlin keeps the faith

Town defender Conor McLaughlin won't panic after the weekend loss
Town defender Conor McLaughlin won't panic after the weekend loss
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Fleetwood’s stand-in skipper Conor McLaughlin told the Cod Army not to worry as he hopes history repeats itself with Town bouncing back from defeat against Swindon Town with victory at Oxford United.

The 25-year-old says one defeat will not dent the strong spirit of this side and wants Town to react just like they did when their 18-game unbeaten streak ended last month to Bolton Wanderers.

An immediate response brought three points at Walsall with Town now preparing for tomorrow’s trip to Oxford and a huge final six games of the campaign.

The Northern Ireland defender says there is no crisis of confidence heading to United with the knowledge they are a good side after just two defeats in a 23-game run that has seen them climb to third in the League One table.

He said: “You’ve seen when our run came to an end, the first result back at Walsall we went and won again.

“The lads are not too down. It was disappointing but there is plenty of confidence and a lot of ability in the team to go again.

“It is one loss and I don’t think we should be fragile on confidence; we are a good team and we know it.”

Town have not been beaten on the road since they lost 2-1 to Port Vale in November and McLaughlin says spirit is still high after Nicky Ajose’s 82nd minute winner saw them slip to a rare home loss.

He said: “It is still good! It is one game so the spirit in the squad has been brilliant all season; it has been one of the best dressing rooms I have been involved in, so the lads will go again don’t worry!

“It was a disappointing result. First half we had a couple of chances to go 1-0 up, and in this league, the first goal is massive and unfortunately in the second half they started to come into it a bit more and managed to get the goal.”

Town wasted a number of good opportunities in the first half against Swindon and head to Oxford with no goal to show from their last three games.

But McLaughlin says Saturday was just one of those days and that they will keep their heads up ahead of an important final month.

He said: “Over the course of the season we have done really well in that regard where we have got the first goal and went on to get two or three – it is just one of those days.

“We can’t get too down because we have been on an amazing run and there are a lot of important matches coming up.”