AFC Fylde striker Darren Stephenson has predicted a tight game against his former club Chorley when the sides meet at Mill Farm on Boxing Day in front of what is set to be the biggest in the Coasters’ history, writes CHRISTOPHER COUGHLIN
It will be a meeting of the league’s best attack against the strongest defence on Monday with Fylde having scored 66 goals already while Chorley have only conceded 14 strikes.
He said: “I anticipate it being quite a tight game but goals change games. We need to start off well and then kick on from there.
“I’ve got good memories of my time at Chorley. I won the league there to there to get promotion into the Conference North. I had a great couple of seasons and I scored a lot of goals.
“I’ve always wanted to play against Teague (Andy Teague) and see how I got on. This is my chance to show teams what I’m about. It’s been a while since I played against them and it will be a lot of fun for me. I think it means a lot more to play against your former club,”
Stephenson is yet to open his league account for Fylde although he scored his first goal for the club with a penalty in the 2-1 Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy loss to Clitheroe on Tuesday night.
“It was a great relief to get my first goal,” he said.
“I’ve not scored for a while and I’m trying to get my confidence going so it was a good goal to start off with for the club and hopefully, I can keep going and get more goals.”
The Christmas period could prove to be a pivotal week for both Fylde and Chorley with the pair also facing each other on New Year’s Day at Victory Park.
Monday’s game is will also see a record attendance with well over 2,000 tickets having already been sold and Stephenson believes that the atmosphere could play a key role.
“We need to try and get the fans going and keep the Chorley fans quiet. If we are able to build and our fans can get behind us, then we can really try and win the game.
“It’s a big game for Fylde to extend our lead at the top of the league. If we do get those three points, it could be massive in the future.
“We’re playing a team that is in and around us. If we win twice or win once and draw once, it will affect us greatly,” Stephenson added.