Head Coach Stephen Crainey has said on numerous occasions over the course of the last week that his team have yet to receive the rub of the green, and need just a little luck in order to be a completely different side altogether.
Injuries have certainly played a part in the club’s league position, with captain and Danny Andrew suffering a hamstring injury against Burton Albion last weekend. Meanwhile, the injuries and setbacks have allowed a host of youngsters to get valuable playing time, including the likes of 18 year-old Cian Hayes and Shayden Morris. Others like Gerard Garner and Harrison Biggins have combined for 12 goals, while Tom Clarke and Callum Johnson help to anchor the defence for the Cod Army. Paddy Lane is one of the players running the show in midfield, as he leads the team with eight assists.
Born in Sheffield, midfielder Biggins played his youth football with Barnsley, before moving to Fleetwood Town to begin his senior career. He would make his debut for the club in a Papa John’s Trophy match against Carlisle United in 2017. At the start of the 2020/21 season, Biggins joined Sky Bet League Two side Barrow. While on loan with Barrow, Biggins netted two goals in 22 league appearances for the club. Since signing with the Cod Army, the former Stocksbridge Park Steels player has registered six goals in Sky Bet League One over 80 appearances. This season, Biggins has five goals to his name, adding one assist in the process.
Born in Liverpool, Garner is a product of the Fleetwood Town Academy. and later signed his first professional contract with the club in 2017. Before breaking into the first team, Garner spent time out on loan with the likes of Southport, Bamber Bridge and FC United of Manchester. and Gateshead (2020). At Gateshead, he scored three goals in eight appearances for the club. This season at Fleetwood Town, Garner has played in 25 games, with 20 of those starts for the Cod Army. He is the club’s top scorer this season with seven goals.
Hayes is another youth academy product of Fleetwood. He would sign his first professional contract with the Cod Army in January 2021, being the club’s youngest ever player having seen action at the age of 16 in a Papa John’s Trophy match with Oldham Athletic in 2019. He made a one-month loan move to FC United of Manchester in late-October 2021. He would go on to score twice in four appearances for the club. On the international level, Hayes was called up to the Republic of Ireland U19 squad in a pair of friendlies against Sweden U19s team in October 2021.
Another of Fleetwood’s young up-and-coming players. Lane is a constant threat from the wide areas. He came through the ranks at Blackburn Rovers before signing for non league side Hyde United in 2018. His performances there earned him a move to Fleetwood last summer. He scored his first goal for the club in a 2-2 draw with Cambridge United in September. A Northern Ireland U21 international, Lane has scored four goals and assisted a further eight in his first season with the club, proving to be a real asset in a side battling against relegation.