National League North
Sat 7th March 2015
Score: 1 - 4

Match Report

The Coasters recorded a fine victory over mid table Leamington thanks to a commanding display and kept the pressure on league-leaders Barrow who also won.

Dan Newton gave the home side an early lead but Rowe leveled the tie three minutes later before adding his second at the end of the first half.

Newton was then sent off in first half stoppage time for a stamp on Joe Booth and Fylde took advantage in the second period adding further goals from Adam Sumner and Richie Allen.

Fylde boss Dave Challinor was forced to make two changes for the game as both Bradley Barnes and Josh Langley were serving their suspensions following dismissals against Hyde two weeks earlier.

That meant Luke Denson moved to partner captain-for-the-day Tom Hannigan at centre back and Caspar Hughes started at left back.

Rowe also returned to the starting 11 in place of Matt Blinkhorn and Michael Barnes was still sidelined due to the injury he picked up in last weekend’s draw with Tamworth.

The Coasters started well and Danny Lloyd had a shot blocked before Sumner’s first delivery of the day was comfortably caught by Ross Atkins, but on eight minutes a decent through ball by Nathan Hicks allowed Dan Newton to race through and fire past Ben Hinchliffe for the lead.

Fylde fans would be forgiven for thinking here we go again going on recent results, but The Coasters were back level within three minutes thanks to a trademark powerful drive from Rowe that flew past Atkins and into the net three minutes later.

Fylde began to edge the game in terms of possession and chances but Leamington continued to look dangerous whenever they got near Fylde’s box.  However, Tom Hannigan was unlucky to see his header tipped over by Atkins seconds before Luke Denson headed the resulting corner narrowly wide.

Jamie Tank’s header was comfortably saved by Fylde keeper Ben Hinchliffe before Fylde broke forward for Allen to force a decent save from Atkins at his near post with a quarter of the match gone.

Some poor defending almost allowed Hicks to score one of his own but thankfully Hinchliffe was on hand to deny the home side’s striker with his legs on 24 minutes.

Fylde hearts were in their mouths on the half hour when a corner was sent long and headed back into the mix only for Joe Magunda to land his header onto the roof of Fylde’s net 90 seconds before Josh Wilson shot wide of the mark up the other end.

As the half looked to be drawing to a relatively quiet close Fylde snatched the lead thanks to a mistake from Atkins.  The Leamington stopper spilled a decent Sumner cross into his box and the ball fell kindly for Rowe who fired past a stranded last defender into the net.  However, the home fans felt aggrieved that the goal stood as they felt their keeper was fouled in the process of spilling the ball.

Then, in stoppage time, Leamington fans had something else to shout about when their goal scorer Newton was rightfully shown a straight red card after felling Booth and stamping on his back as he walked past him.  The striker had no argument and walked straight off the pitch without even looking at what colour card referee Chris O’Donnell had in his hand.

Despite the man advantage, Fylde couldn’t find an early third goal in the second period that would have killed the game off.  Rowe broke to the by-line and tried to cut back for an un-expectant Lloyd and Allen fired the rebounded clearance over the bar on 50 minutes.

The visitors were playing some excellent keep-ball around the middle of the pitch and Allen should have scored on 57 minutes but after a move involving eight Fylde players, he cut inside only send a weak low shot straight at Atkins.

A minute later a similar move ended with Josh Wilson’s strike being easily gathered by Leamington’s keeper.

With just over an hour gone, Leamington came close to an equaliser but Jack Edwards fired wide from inside Fylde’s box seconds after Hannigan almost took out Bilal Yafai and was duly shown a yellow card in the process.

With 15 minutes remaining the visitors started to look comfortable again and both Rowe and Denson were unlucky not to trouble Atkins with decent half-chances apiece before full back Connor Gudger shot wide of the target with a long-range strike that flew through a sea of bodies in the Fylde area.

Fylde won what looked to be a routine free kick 40 yards out with  83 minutes gone but, aided by the strong wind, Sumner’s curling delivery beat everyone, sailed over the stranded Atkins and in off the underside of the bar to give Fylde an unassailable 3-1 lead.

And two minutes later Allen put the icing on the cake for Fylde with a sublime finish from Hinchliffe’s long pass up field, curling a low shot around Atkins from just outside the area to make it 4-1 to The Coasters.

Leamington: Atkins, Mace, Gudger, Magunda, Tank, Gordon, Moore, Goddard (Edwards 66), Chilton (Dodd 79), Hicks (Yafai 66), Newton (C); Subs not used: Fry, Feeney.

GOAL: Dan Newton (8)

RED CARD: Dan Newton (45+2)

AFC Fylde: Hinchliffe, Hughes, Sumner, Denson, Hannigan (C), Tomsett, Booth (Bent 89), Wilson (Mullen 85), Rowe, Lloyd (Charles 82), Allen; Subs not used: Blinkhorn, Gregory.

GOALS: Danny Rowe (11, 45), Adam Sumner (83), Richie Allen (85)

YELLOW CARD: Tom Hannigan (68), Caspar Hughes

HT: 1-2

ATT: 545

MOM: Tom Hannigan

REFEREE: Chris O’Donnell

Stats: (AFC Fylde first)

Shots On – 19/6

Shots Off – 6/4

Corners – 7/4

Offsides – 2/2

Free Kicks – 13/12

Yellow – 2/0

Red – 0/1