Blackpool manager Simon Grayson has rubbished allegations by Joey Barton that he knew Fleetwood Town’s starting XI before The two teams played each other on Saturday.

The Tangerines ran out 3-1 winners in the Fylde Coast clash but Barton says he wants Fleetwood to launch an internal investigation amid claims Grayson knew his starting line up days before the match.

Barton told The Blackpool Gazette: “I know that he (Grayson) knew my team and my tactics on Wednesday, which is disappointing.

It is football, though, and I understand that people talk. Sometimes there’s a bit of pillow talk between players and agents, and maybe people who are a bit disgruntled because they’re not in the side.

“It’s disappointing when it happens in football because we’re usually a proper set of men, and in a proper group you don’t get that.

“Clearly the fact that Simon and his players and staff had lots of details on what we were going to do is something we now need to get to the bottom of.

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“We’ll conduct our own internal stuff on that, on how or where that information was given to them.

“It’s tough because I’m not the FBI. I’m just trying to pick a team to win a game, but that doesn’t take anything away from Blackpool and their victory.

“It gives them a slight advantage going into the game, but if they’d done their homework and knew what they were doing anyway it’s the players that cross the line and then it’s 11 versus 11.

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“I’m not going to use that as an excuse. We lost fairly and squarely, but I’ll be making sure we tighten our structures and make sure we’re a lot more clinical and efficient in what we do.”

In response, Grayson, who returned to manage Blackpool this season 11 years after departing the club for Leeds United, said: “If Joey wants to investigate then that’s fine. But I can say 100 per cent that we didn’t know it.

“We worked hard all week on how we were going to play and only touched on Fleetwood in our 1.30pm Saturday meeting and then again at 2pm.”

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