Joey Barton has been talking once again about the challenges he faces in his first managerial role.
The League One boss pointing out that whilst Sunderland’s stadium holds 40,000+, the town of Fleetwood only has 25,000 people living there.
In terms of cash, he points to Sunderland’s parachute payments, he mentions a figure of £28m he thinks the Mackems will get this season, but it is actually even higher, £34m.
Of course, for a club to finish bottom of the Premier League and the Championship in consecutive seasons takes some doing, the parachute payments were intended to give relegated clubs an unfair advantage in trying to get out of the Championship, not League One!
You get the feeling that with Joey Barton it will only go one of two ways, either he will crash and burn very quickly in this job as manager, or there could be some fun to be had this season with him, especially if Fleetwood can overachieve.
The former Newcastle player is repeatedly using Sunderland as the benchmark of how difficult the season will be, describing it as ‘David v Goliath’, but all clubs end up in a division because that is where they deserve to be.
Joey Barton says this season he hopes he can ‘shock the world’, for Sunderland they will be wanting to do the exact opposite.
Joey Barton talking to the Blackpool Gazette:
“The level I have operated at as a player is higher than the level Fleetwood are currently at. The challenge is to get the processes up to that level. That takes time. You can’t come in with a magic wand.
“In football, if you have not got finance you have to have a phenomenal culture and working environment.
“It is so hard to win trophies and everybody in football deems that as success, but only a select band of teams can win trophies every season.
“We have 25,000 people in Fleetwood and Sunderland’s stadium holds 40,000.
“They are going to come down with their second tranche of parachute payments from the Premier League, which I think is about £28m, so they are at a huge advantage to us financially.
“In that case we have to do everything in our power that we can control to close that gap. It is David v Goliath.
“If you’d said 10 years ago that Fleetwood would play Sunderland in the league people would probably have laughed in your face.
“But once August 4 comes, that is what we are going to be faced with.
“But I’m confident, with the right processes in place. David sometimes can slay Goliath and that has to be our attitude.
“We are Fleetwood Town and we have to have that underdog mentality because in league terms there are lots of bigger clubs out there.
“But if we are together on and off the pitch and we have a better collective, underdog teams can shock the world.”