AFC Fylde extended their lead at the top of the National League North table with a 2-0 win away at Peterborough Sports thanks to a Mo Faal brace.
It was a fixture that after 70 minutes could have gone either way before Faal took the game by the scruff of the neck following two crucial bits of defending from Alex Whitmore & Chris Neal.
Danny Whitehead’s corner into the 18-yard box was attacked by several Fylde shirts at the near post before bobbling to the feet of Faal after Peterborough had numerous attempts to clear for him to convert from close range.
Continuing to defend like absolute warriors, the Coasters then cleared upfield and made sure of the points after Faal breezed through the Peterborough defence and was brought down inside the area, which he picked himself up from and slotted into the bottom corner.
Adam Murray made four changes to the side that drew 0-0 with Kettering Town in midweek, with Jordan Cranston, Dan Malone, Danny Whitehead & Tom Walker replacing Harry Davis, Luke Conlan, Will Hatfield & Luke Charman.
As both sides continued to find their feet in the fixture, it wasn’t until the 19th minute that the first chance of the game was registered, and it fell the way of the Coasters.
Nice play from Dan Malone saw him find Jordan Cranston out on the left for him to take a touch and cross towards Mo Faal inside the 18-yard box, who turned and saw his effort at goal blocked by Connor Johnson.
Opportunities were few and far between for both sides, but as the 30-minute mark approached, Peterborough would have felt that they should have been ahead after Jordan Crawford’s cross-shot bounced to Josh McCammon six yards out, but he somehow managed to blast over.
During referee Paul Cooper going on a booking spree of Faal and boss Adam Murray, following confusion surrounding Faal not being allowed to carry on with a numberless shirt after a spot of blood on his original jersey, the Coasters almost took the lead.
Tom Walker’s corner from the right was aimed towards the back post for Whitmore to attack and head at goal, only for him to be denied by the back of a blue shirt on the line.
Half-Time: Peterborough Sports 0-0 AFC Fylde
Fylde came out looking to turn to the opposition and put pressure on early doors, but with Peterborough defending well, it presented Crawford with the chance to turn on the edge of the area and launch towards the top corner, though he ended up lifting over the bar.
There was a moment for Murray’s men to drive forward and test the Peterborough backline and Peter Crook through Siya Ligendza, who burst into the area and forced the Peterborough shot-stopper into a smart stop at his near post.
However, if it wasn’t for Whitmore, the Coasters would have found themselves behind after a loose ball to Chris Neal was charged down by Abduramane Sano-Sani and was making its towards the back of the net before Whits scurried back to goal and cleared at the very last second.
The last-ditch clearance proved to be an unbelievable bit of defending as the Coasters went up the other end and took the lead.
Danny Whitehead swung a corner into the danger zone for a flurry of white shirts to attack, but after the ball bobbled around several Coasters players, Faal was next in line, and he managed to turn into the bottom corner with a right-footed finish.
The hosts put up a superb fight all afternoon and continued to push Fylde all the way, even to the point where Neal produced an outstanding stop onto the post following Sano-Sani’s last-second flick at goal from a cross.
Mo’s first goal continued to be a huge one as the seconds ticked down and looked as though it would seal the points, but when he later shimmied his way past the Peterborough defence like a hot knife through butter, he was brought down inside the area, just as he was about to pull the trigger to win a penalty.
If Mo was following recent tradition, he only scores braces, and it was no different this time around, with Crook diving the wrong way as Mo slotted into the bottom left corner from the spot.
Full-Time: Peterborough Sports 0-2 AFC Fylde
Peterborough Sports: Crook, Bazeley, Fryatt, Johnson, Fox, Kennedy, Camara (79’ Gyamfi), Crawford, Sani, McCammon (80’ Jones), Nicholson.
Unused subs: Steele, Williams-Lowe.
AFC Fylde: Neal, Obi, Whitmore, Bird (70’ Conlan), Cranston (70’ Charman), Barrett, Malone, Philliskirk, Whitehead, Walker (46’ Ligendza), Faal.
Unused Subs: Davis, Hatfield.