Month: September 2018

REPORT: AFC Fylde 0-0 Harrogate Town

AFC Fylde’s unbeaten run stretched to six games, as the Coasters were held at home by Harrogate Town in front of the BT Sport cameras.

Clear-cut chances were few and far between in the first half at Mill Farm, but the hosts did look more likely to break the deadlock in the early stages.

Dave Challinor’s men first looked like threatening the goal of newly-promoted Harrogate when Joe Cardle floated in a cross with seven minutes played, but it was just over the head of James Hardy and the away side cleared their lines.

Just before the quarter-hour mark, Cardle tested the Harrogate defence with a second testing cross, this time via a corner, but it was claimed by opposition goalkeeper James Belshaw.

Fylde’s first real opening of the first 45 came in the 19th minute. A second Cardle corner was swung in, and it was headed away, but only as far as Ryan Croasdale.

Unfortunately, Croasdale was off balance as he executed his half-volley just inside the box and it went over the bar and out for a Harrogate goal-kick.

Harrogate had their first shot on goal just two minutes later. Josh Falkingham intercepted a Croasdale pass in midfield before playing in George Thomson, who stung the palms of Jay Lynch with a long-range shot that was straight at the Coasters keeper.

An eventful period of the half continued when in-form Fylde forward Danny Rowe flicked the ball away from a Harrogate defender and looked odds-on to score, but he was held back, however no free-kick was awarded by the referee.

Fylde would next get a sight at goal in the 34th minute. Hardy worked some space for himself on the left-hand side of the box, and cut the ball back for captain Andrew Bond, but like Croasdale earlier, his effort would only succeed in clearing the bar.

A flurry of chances followed, with Harrogate being the team next to attempt to break the deadlock.

Joe Leesley rampaged down the left for the team in yellow and black, and his cross picked out George Thomson on the right-hand side of the area.

Thomson brought it down, and had a shot blocked by Zaine Francis-Angol, and then he fired the rebound over and out for a goal-kick.

Cardle then tried his luck with a left-footed curler from the edge of the box, only to see his shot blocked out for another Coasters corner.

Said corner almost brought out the opening goal though – Cardle again delivered brilliantly, Danny Kane controlled it brilliantly and his attempt from point-blank range was well kept out by Belshaw as Harrogate clung onto the 0-0 scoreline.

Fylde continued to press as the half drew to a close. Both Cardle and Rowe had shots blocked within a matter of the seconds, with the first one going behind for a corner.

Harrogate broke from the set-piece though and it looked like Simon Weaver’s side would get the lead against the run of play, but Lynch showed why he is Fylde’s number one with a superb stop.

Forward Dom Knowles was one-on-one with Lynch and it seemed for all the world that it was set to be 1-0 to Harrogate, however Lynch spread himself and superbly denied the Knowles effort and Fylde cleared their lines.

As the board for two minutes of added-on time was shown, Rowe had a go from long range and the opposition goalkeeper was equal to it, with the forward unable to add to his tally for the season which already stands at five.

Fylde started the second half as they ended the first, with a great chance.

Luke Burke teed up Hardy with a low ball into the box, which Hardy hit first time, and if it was not for a world-class save by Belshaw, the hosts would have taken the lead as it was driven towards the roof of the net.

Harrogate captain Kelvin Langmead rattled the crossbar with a header 25 minutes from time, as the majority of the second half became a niggly midfield battle, although Fylde still had time to produce one more top-notch save by Belshaw.

With 15 minutes of the contest remaining, a low right wing free-kick by Hardy picked out Rowe in the middle. His snap-shot effort looked set to nestle into the back of the net, and it would have done had Belshaw not got his fingertips on the effort to keep the game locked at 0-0.

Despite being unable to find the killer goal, the Coasters remain unbeaten from their last six matches and sit third in the National League table.

AFC Fylde: Lynch, Francis-Angol, Byrne, Bond, Hardy (Hemmings 90), Croasdale, Rowe, Cardle (Tasdemir 45), Burke, Kane, Kellermann (Toure 71)

Subs not used: Tunnicliffe, Birch

Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Burrell, Kitching, Falkingham (Agnew 73), Howe, Langmead, Thomson (Beck 67), Kerry, Knowles (Williams 89), Muldoon, Leesley

Subs not used: Parker, Cracknell

Attendance: 1,709 (148)