Coasters bid to maintain top spot

Danny Lloyd, scoring against Buxton, looking to be on target again on Saturday.

Danny Lloyd, scoring against Buxton, looking to be on target again on Saturday.

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AFC Fylde have been making use of a rare midweek off - and manager Dave Challinor hopes the ‘free’ time will be put to good use with a trip to Barwell on Saturday in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League.

Challinor has been doing plenty of work on the training ground this week in the wake of the 2-2 home draw with Buxton last Saturday.

It was two valuable home points dropped, but not entirely costly as results elsewhere meant that manager Dave Challinor’s side stayed at the summit of the division.

He said: “We have quite a lot of work in training this week, more a case of fine-tuning than anything else.

“A lot of our work is very good, but it is the little things that need addressing by us and I have been concentrating on areas where we can improve.”

AFC Fylde are one of the favourites to attain promotion this season and their reputation as potential high-flyers has not been lost on opposing managers.

Challinor said: “Teams have been giving us a lot of respect – the way they set themselves up against us makes it tough, and we just have to have more patience.

“Those chances will come.

“It has been a tough start with all the matches that we have had to play so far, but then it is the same for every other side in the division.”

As well as looking at the attack, the AFC Fylde defence has been under scrutiny.

Challinor was concerned that unaccustomed lapses against Buxton led to the draw.

He said: “We conceded poor goals against Buxton, which if you look at our defensive record, that is not like us.

“We are normally solid defensively and we haven’t conceded that many goals,”

Tomorrow’s match at Barwell has been re-arranged.

AFC Fylde’s scheduled opponents Stamford are involved in FA Cup action.

Barwell are in mid-table and Challinor has done his homework on the team.

“I saw them myself earlier in the season and had a report on their match with Skelmersdale last Saturday (lost 1-0)

“We have looked at how they set themselves up, but then Barwell will probably know all about us as well.”

Challinor reports no fresh injury worries for tomorrow’s clash.

Craig Mahon, signed on a month’s loan from Chester, will figure again tomorrow - but he will not be available for the following Saturday for the FA Trophy tie against Kendal.

In the North West Counties League, AFC Blackpool are at home to Glossop North End on Saturday, while Squires Gate journey to Winsford.