Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton has been full of praise for Leeds United loanee Lewie Coyle, who has become a key player for his team.

The Whites defender has been on loan at Highbury Stadium since the summer, and will remain with the League One outfit for the remainder of the season. The former Newcastle United and Manchester City player, in charge of the next stage of his development, is certainly delighted to have him on board.

Fleetwood have started life under Barton strongly. Their emphatic and eye catching 4-0 win away to Doncaster Rovers last weekend earned them a spot back in the top 10 of the third tier table, and has them in a position to launch a promotion push over the rest of the campaign.

One of the reasons for their lofty league placing has been the solidity of their defence. Only three sides – Barnsley, Blackpool and Portsmouth – have conceded fewer than their 11 goals against this term thus far, and Coyle has been a big part of the reason why.

Barton was quick to recognise that fact when he gave his opinion on the defender, who has made 23 appearances for Leeds in his short career.

“Lewie Coyle – what a great player to have in your side because he competes anywhere you want him to.” The Fleetwood boss told the Blackpool Gazette after the win over Doncaster.

“I think you could play him in goal and he would give absolutely everything.

“It is a privilege to have him in the building. He sets the tone for a lot of it.”

Leeds United boss Marcelo Bielsa will be delighted to hear his defender is making a big impression out on loan. He is not blessed with options at the heart of his defence, so Coyle could be edging his way into a position to be in contention for a spot in the Whites’ first team next term, if he can continue his progression and strong form.


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