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Opposition Profile: Fleetwood Town

6 June 2017

A new feature where we take a closer look at who Rovers will face in League One next season.

Fleetwood Town

Founded: 1997
Nickname: Town

Founded in 1997, the current Fleetwood Town is the third incarnation of the club which was first formed back in 1908 and the re-established in 1977.

After going professional in 2010-11, the Cod Army enjoyed a hugely successful season in 2011-12, as Jamie Vardy’s goals helped fire Fleetwood to the third round of the FA Cup and promotion into the Football League for the first time.

Further success was just around the corner, as, in May 2014, Fleetwood beat Burton Albion 1-0 in the League Two play-off final at Wembley to secure their sixth promotion in 10 years.

The club have since cemented their place in League One, narrowly missing out on promotion to the Championship last term, and have moved into their new £9m Poolfoot Farm training complex, which was officially opened by Sir Alex Ferguson in April 2016.  

The Manager: Uwe Rosler

A former East Germany international, Uwe Rosler played for a number of clubs in his homeland before making his name at Manchester City in the mid-90s.

The striker scored 65 goals in 181 appearances for City, before returning to Germany in 1998.

He had a brief spell back in England with Southampton, before ending his playing days with Lillestrom in Norway, which is where he started his managerial career in 2005, after recovering from lung cancer.

Rosler remained in Norway for five years, later taking the reins at Viking and Molde, before being appointed manager of Brentford in June 2011.

In his second season at Griffin Park, the Bees were a whisker away from securing promotion to the Championship – missing a stoppage-time penalty in a dramatic final day defeat to Doncaster. Brentford then lost the play-off final 2-1 to Yeovil Town.

Rosler left the west London club in December 2013 to take up the manager’s position at Championship side Wigan Athletic. Three months later, he returned to former club Manchester City and masterminded a surprise 2-1 victory at the Etihad in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup. The Latics later lost on penalties to Arsenal in the semi-finals at Wembley.

The German guided Wigan to the Championship play-offs, courtesy of a fifth-place finish, but lost in the semi-finals to eventual winners QPR.

Rosler was relieved of his duties at the DW Stadium in November 2014, before taking the helm at Leeds United six months later. However, after recording just two wins from 12 games in charge, he was sacked in mid-October.

In July 2016, the 48-year-old was appointed manager of League One side Fleetwood Town and he was soon joined on the Fylde Coast by former Rovers first team coach Rob Kelly as his assistant.

The Ground: Highbury Stadium

Opened in 1939, Highbury Stadium is situated on the south-west corner of Memorial Park.

It is the home of both Fleetwood Town and Blackpool FC’s Reserves.

With a capacity of just the 5,327, it is the second smallest stadium in League One, behind AFC Wimbledon’s Kingsmeadow ground.

Last Season: 4th, League One

Under the stewardship of new manager Uwe Rosler, Fleetwood Town enjoyed the highest league finish in the club’s history in 2016-17.

Rosler guided Town to fourth spot in League One, four points outside the automatic promotion places, and a place in the play-offs.

Here, they lost 1-0 on aggregate to Bradford City over two legs.

In the cup competitions, Fleetwood made an early exit from the EFL Cup, losing on penalties to Uwe Rosler’s former club Leeds in the first round.

However, they progressed to the third round of the FA Cup, following replay victories over Southport and Shrewsbury, before being knocked out by Bristol City – again in a replay.  

Last Meeting: August 30th 2016

Having never met in a competitive fixture at first team level, Rovers’ development squad visited Fleetwood in the Checkatrade Trophy last season, with Devante Cole’s goal on the stroke of half-time the difference between the two teams.

In a recent pre-season encounter, Rovers defeated Fleetwood 2-0 at the Crown Ground in July 2012, thanks to goals from Mauro Formica and Nuno Gomes.


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