Fleetwood Town won’t fear Delap throw

Rory Delap, once of Stoke City, now at Burton Albion
Rory Delap, once of Stoke City, now at Burton Albion
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Fleetwood Town boss Graham Alexander insists there’ll be no special plans to deal with the long throw threat of Burton Albion’s Rory Delap.

The former Stoke City star, famed for his arm from the touchline , is expected to be part of Gary Rowett’s Brewers squad for the visit to Highbury.

But Alexander says there is no need to drill his side in defending the midfielder’s trademark move – even if he has warned them of the threat.

“We have to be aware of what Rory can do,” Alexander told The Gazette

“But there are a few long throw specialists throughout League Two.

“There’ll be no worry, no individual plans.

“We’ll talk to the lads about it.

“But apart from long throws there are a hundred other things that go on in games.

“If you try to stop everything you’re not going to be able to concentrate on your own game.

“It’s weapon for them.

“But there’ll be other threats from their team.

“We can’t just think about one.”

Albion made the League Two play-offs last season, losing out to eventual winners Bradford City in the semi finals.

Alexander and assistant Chris Lucketti watched the Brewers in the first leg and were impressed with what they saw.

Alexander said: “Me and Chris went to watch them in the first leg of the playoffs last year.

“We thought there would only be one winner in that tie but obviously Bradford came back strong in the second leg.

“It’s a different season.

“We’re a different team as well.

“We’re just looking to keep up our level of performance.

“We’re improving each week, we’re building and we’ll continue that on Saturday.

“We want to try to get up and running with our home form.

“We started with a win and we want to carry that on.”

The Brewers have been forced to rebuild over the summer, having lost Calvin Zola and Jacques Maghoma – whose tangle with Town keeper Scott Davies kicked off the 4-0 thumping on Burton’s last visit to Highbury.

Despite the loss of such influential players Alexander believes Burton, who have brought in Delap and former Torquay hitman Rene Howe over the summer months, may be an even tougher side to beat this time around.

“I think as a team they might even have strengthened,” he said.

“They lost one or two over the summer but if you can bring in players of quality and of good character it might not weaken you at all.

“That’s for Gary Rowett to concentrate on.

“I just look at the opposition as they are now.

“I don’t care who they had last season or the season before. It’s about the team that confronts us on Saturday.

“We’ll just concentrate on our performance and our players.”

Burton have taken four points from a possible six in their opening fixtures, Town one of few teams to better their opening record – wins over Dagenham and Plymouth securing a perfect start.

But Alexander isn’t getting carried away, insisting there’s plenty of hard work ahead if Town are to match their tag as the bookies’ favourites to go up.

He said: “It’s a good start, we’re pleased with the start.

“Nothing more, nothing less.

“But I think Burton will be tough opponents.

“They had a very good season last year and were really unlucky in the play-offs.

“They are a team against who we’ll have to play at somewhere near our maximum to get something out of the game and that’s what we’ll be aiming to do.

“It’s still early days, we aren’t going to get carried away

“We know we need to work every day to get our performances right on a Saturday.

“We’re not going to come off that one bit.

“We know Burton’s threat, we know their strengths but we also know ours.

“Hopefully Burton will be worrying about us more than we’ll be worrying about them tomorrow.”