Tight defence is key for Mellon

Jon Parkin
Jon Parkin
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KEEP the clean sheets coming.

That’s the message from Fleetwood Town boss Micky Mellon following a third shut-out in his side’s five Football League matches to date.

With just two goals conceded, Fleetwood can claim to have the meanest defence in League Two.

And following Saturday’s 4-0 victory at Morecambe, Mellon was keen to pay tribute to the men behind that superb record.

He said: “We’ve worked very hard on Saturday. I’ve got to let people know that this team take great pride in their defending.

“They work very hard – the back four and the goalkeeper.

“All the defenders at the club put in an incredible amount in order to try to make sure we all know what we’re doing.

“Quite rightly the back four take as much pride in a clean sheet as a striker does in scoring a goal.”

Town made it three league wins on the bounce at Morecambe and have climbed to fourth in the table, three points behind early leaders Gillingham.

And with eight goals scored in their last two, Mellon is keen to keep the impressive run going at home to Northampton on Saturday.

He added: “We’ve really got into our stride now and hopefully we can keep that up.

“Some people might say we made a slow start to the season. If that’s a slow start, I’ll have a slow start every year. I’ll happily take that for the rest of my career.”

Jon Parkin opened his Town account at The Globe Arena, the big striker scoring a hat-trick before turning provider for the Cod Army’s fourth – he showed real skill to control the ball and cross with the outside of his foot for Barry Nicholson to head home.

Mellon was full of praise for his versatile frontman.

He said: “We know that Jon is such a big player for us. He adds a lot more for us than just goals. He’s very good on the floor, as he’s shown.

“But like some people have labelled him, he’s a big unit to aim at, a physical presence in that final third.”

Morecambe boss Jim Bentley apologised to Shrimpers fans following the home defeat.

He said: “After such a good start to the season, in which we have put in some excellent displays, I couldn’t see that coming but we were second best in almost every area.

“Sometimes you have to hold your hands up and say you were beaten by the better team and that was definitely the case. They were more than worthy winners.”

Port Vale, currently sitting one spot ahead of Fleetwood, are next Tuesday’s visitors, following the Cobblers.