AFC Fylde returned to winning ways in the National League with a 2-0 victory against Maidstone United at Mill Farm.

A flicked header from Neill Byrne and a 30-yard rocket Arlen Birch strengthened the Coasters position in the play-off places and extended their unbeaten run to seven games.

Dave Challinor made two changes to the side that drew at Chesterfield last weekend. Tom Brewitt and Jim Kellermann made way for Andy Bond and James Hardy who was coming back from England C duty.

The visitors started brightly and had the first chance of the game. A low cross from the right from Cassidy was met by new signing Jack Powell who slipped as his effort went wide of the near post.

Fylde responded and a corner whipped in by Cardle was met by Neill Byrne who had his header headed off the line by Paxman.

On 20 minutes Cardle caused more problems for the visitors as his cross from the left was met by James Hardy but his header lacked the power to test Lee Worgan.

The dangerous Blair Turgott came into the game for the visitors and had a low shot from the edge of the box well saved by Jay Lynch who rushed out to deny Jake Cassidy a clear-cut chance just a couple of minutes later.

Fylde almost went in front of the brink of half-time as a Birch cross was diverted inches wide of his own net by Nana Twumasi.

Maidstone started the second half the brighter and almost profited from some sloppy passing from the Coasters. Turgott had a good chance from 12 yards but the visitors best chance fell to Paxman whose volley from 18 yards
came back off the post and was cleared by Tunnicliffe.

A superb pass on the turn from Cardle presented Andy Bond with a glorious chance one on one with Worgan but he fired over from 12 yards to the disappointment of the home crowd.

With 25 minutes to go the Coasters made their first change with Ashley Hemmings replacing Bond and the summer signing from Salford made his mark on the game within minutes of coming on.

On 68 minutes the deadlock was broken. A corner from Hemmings to the near post was met by Byrne who flicked his header past Worgan into the bottom left corner to claim his first Coasters goal.

James Hardy and Danny Philliskirk tried their luck with efforts from range before the hosts made the game safe in style. A corner from Cardle was cleared as far as Croasdale who played the ball back to Birch.

The full-back tried his luck from 30 yards and his luck was in as he rifled the ball home into the bottom left corner to also claim his first goal for the club. The final whistle blew to confirm a sixth win in eight home games for the
Coasters as they made ground on the leaders in the National League.

Fylde move up one place to sixth on 29 points, just five points behind joint leaders Salford City and Wrexham.

The Coasters’ next game sees the start of their FA Cup campaign as they welcome Chesterfield to Mill Farm on Saturday.

Lynch,Birch,Byrne,Tunnicliffe,Francis-Angol,Croasdale,Bond (66),Philliskirk,Hardy (90),Cardle,Rowe

SUBS: Hemmings (66)Brewitt (90)

Tasdemir, Kellermann, Burke

Maidstone United:
Worgan, Twumasi (80), De Havilland, Walton, Finney, Doyle (86), Muldoon (80), Powell, Paxman, Turgott, Cassidy

Omatayo (80), Wilson (80), Phillips (86)