Alex Cairns puts friendship to one side ahead of Fleetwood Town’s trip to Barnsley

Fleetwood Town keeper Alex Cairns hopes to get the better of close friend Alex Mowatt
Fleetwood Town keeper Alex Cairns hopes to get the better of close friend Alex Mowatt

Alex Cairns will put his close friendship with Barnsley’s Alex Mowatt aside in aiming to dent their promotion charge in League One.

The Yorkshiremen are third in the table, a point behind second-placed Sunderland and eight adrift of leaders Luton Town.

Cairns and Mowatt both hail from Doncaster and came through the youth ranks at Leeds United.

“I have a really close friend who plays at Barnsley,” Cairns said of Mowatt.

“He played really well against us last time, I felt he changed the game.

“It will be nice if we can quieten them down and put a dent in their promotion chances.

“I know they are trying to get automatic promotion but we will be doing our best to stop that.

“It is nice to get back over there. I know a few of my friends and family are coming across so it will be nice for them to come and watch me play.”

While Barnsley are in the top three, Town are 11th in the table and 10 points behind a Doncaster Rovers side sitting in the final play-off position.

Though Joey Barton’s players still have a game in hand on Rovers, Cairns believes that catching them may be one step too far this season.

Instead, with half-a-dozen games remaining, he wants to end the season on a high and see where Town finish the season as a result.

First up are Barnsley, who were 3-1 winners at Highbury at the end of September.

Cairns said: “If you look across the games with the top six that have been up there, we have always been in the game.

“Sometimes the rub of the green has not gone our way or silly errors here and there.

“Some things just have not gone our way this year.

“That is why we are where we are in the table; no chance of going down and it will be a miracle if we go up.

“It has been a good season because we know where we are and what we need to strengthen as a team.

“I’m looking forward to going into the last few games, fresh, playing well and see where it takes us.”