On-loan defender Charlie Taylor insists Fleetwood Town have to put their FA Cup misery behind them and target a festive push for League supremacy.
Town were dumped out of the famous old knockout competition 1-0 by Burton Albion in a second-round replay on Tuesday night.
It ended a four-game unbeaten run for Graham Alexander’s side, a record Taylor, who is expected to stay at Highbury until the end of the season, wants to see matched or bettered in the busy fortnight to come.
“We’d had a few good results before Burton,” he said.
“It was bitterly disappointing but we just have to pick ourselves up and go again in the League on Saturday.”
Saturday’s home game against Cheltenham Town is the start of a hectic run of fixtures which sees Town travel to Morecambe and Wycombe before hosting Accrington Stanley, all in the space of seven days.
Alexander accused his side of “lacking a competitive edge” at the Pirelli Stadium on Tuesday, and Taylor admits Town need to battle to ensure they come out of Christmas among the leading pack.
He said: “Christmas is a busy schedule and we need to put as many points on the board as possible.
“The games are going to come thick and fast but we’re just going to have to deal with it.
“We know we need to be better than we were at Burton.
“If we get things right it could be an important time for us.”
Billy Kee, whose last-minute goal at Highbury earned Burton the replay, struck again after 24 minutes to seal Town’s FA Cup exit.
Taylor, who is on loan from Championship Leeds, acknowleged the Burton striker was enjoying a good time against Graham Alexander’s men
“Billy Kee seems to have that knack of scoring against us,” he said.
“He’s done us twice in two games. But that’s gone now. We have to put it behind us and focus on the games to come.”
And the 19-year-old revealed how Alexander had tried to turn things round.
“He told us we were too deep,” said Taylor. “We all needed to push our game on, we did that second half and we were the better team.
“But we couldn’t get that goal and now we’re out.”
Fleetwood were expected to complete the paperwork on Taylor’s loan extension by today.
And the impressive young left-back revealed how he’s enjoying the freedom given to him by Town’s system.
“The gaffer really likes full- backs to push on and support the attack,” he said.
“That suits me. I really want to show that side of my game. It’s great he’s encouraging me to keep on doing it.”