Simon Grayson on future of Barrie McKay at Fleetwood Town

Barrie McKay’s future will be decided at the end of the season, says Fleetwood Town head coach Simon Grayson.

Friday, 23rd April 2021, 8:00 am

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Attacker McKay is coming to the end of his second loan spell at Highbury from Championship club Swansea City.

The 26-year-old first joined Fleetwood in January last year. He took to League One comfortably, creating and scoring twice in 10 games last season, and playing in both legs of the play-off semi-final against Wycombe Wanderers.

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Barrie McKay has started Fleetwood's last four games

However, the Scot found it difficult to rediscover that form after rejoining the club on a season-long deal last September.

Injuries and illness have disrupted his season this time around.

The former Rangers and Nottingham Forest wideman suffered from Covid in February, and had to fight to regain both his fitness and his place in the matchday squad as Simon Grayson’s men found form last month.

A natural winger or ‘number 10,’ the 3-5-2 formation which Grayson favoured at Highbury did not afford him too many opportunities.

However, McKay came off the bench in the defeat to Peterborough United at the start of the month – his first appearance for seven weeks – and has started all four games since.

He scored Town’s winner at Wimbledon on Easter Monday – his first goal in five months – but Grayson would not be drawn when asked about the loanee’s future after Tuesday’s defeat by Crewe Alexandra.

However, the Town boss did praise the work ethic and patience of McKay, who has notched up 24 appearances this season.

Grayson said: “The one thing he has done is worked hard in training and waited for his opportunity.

“That’s not been easy because he’s had a bit of Covid and his season has been stop-start.

“The system that we were playing when I first came was a bit more defensive because we were in a bit of a precarious position in the table and needed to grind a few results out – and sometimes you can’t go with people like Barrie.

“In these last few weeks, there has been an opportunity to bring him back into the team and he’s got some good qualities.

“He’s not a bad player whatsoever and the level he’s played at shows that.

“He’s a bright spark but, in terms of his long-term future, there are a lot of decisions to be made.

“There are players already here and others we want to bring to the club, so we’ll approach that when the season finishes.”

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