AFC Fylde 2-0 Maidstone Utd: Coasters ease past The Stones on Non-League Day

AFC Fylde are heading to Wembley in the FA Trophy

AFC Fylde looked to make it seven without a defeat when heading into Saturday’s clash with 19th place  Maidstone United.

The Stones came into the game having lost three of their last six and only managing two victories.

Fylde had their first chance on the six minute mark, a teasing cross from Danny Philliskirk was cleared for a corner.

From the resulting corner, Andy Bonds had his header stopped on the line and scrambled clear by the visitors.

With 20 minutes gone, Joe Cardle s sold the Maidstone United defender with a slight body feint, his cross that followed was met by James Hardy but couldn’t generate the power need to beat the keeper.

On 36 minutes, Blair Turgott came close to drawing first blood for the visitors, latching onto a loose ball but his resulting shot at the near post was parried for a corner, but it was cleared with ease.

Fylde keeper Jay Lynch was called on again before the half time whistle, Maidstone’s Jake Cassidy was sent through one on one, Lynch however showed great acceleration to rush Cassidy, forcing him into taking a poor shot.

Half Time – AFC Fylde 0-0 Maidstone Utd

Maidstone looked to continue in the same vein as the first half, within three minutes of the second half starting, a ball to the back post found Jack Paxman, who’s volley crashed onto the Fylde post. The Coasters seemingly half asleep following the start of the second half.

Turgott once again was a constant thorn in the side of the AFC defence, pouncing on another loose pass in the 51st minute his resulting shot, however, was smothered by Lynch.

With just over twenty minutes of regulation time remaining Fylde finally found their breakthrough. Cardle picked up ball on the halfway line and drove forward, his fizzing shot could only be parried.

The resulting corner gave the Mariners their opener, Neil Byrne’s header at the front post proved too much for Maidstone stopper Lee Worgan.

Arlen Birch sealed the match for Fylde with a moment of individual brilliance with just two minutes to go, a corner was cleared only as far as Birch who took aim from 30 yards and buried a ferocious shot in the bottom left corner leaving Worgan helpless.

Fylde manager David Challinor spoke of a need for greater precision when facing sides with a defensive block; “We have missed opportunities we know we need to be more clinical, and the lads are not under pressure but they need to start to doing a little bit more.”

In a game that could’ve been won by either side,  Fylde showed the persistence and patience which proved to be the deciding factor as The Coasters climb into sixth place in the Vanarama National League.

Full time AFC Fylde 2-0 Maidstone Utd