Dave Challinor hopes AFC Fylde’s Danny Rowe can add team glory to his individual honours
AFC Fylde boss Dave Challinor wants Danny Rowe to fire the club to their ultimate goal: a place in the EFL.
The Coasters face Solihull Moors tomorrow, knowing a win takes them to Wembley for the National League play-off final.
They go into the game after beating Harrogate Town 3-1 in midweek, and although Rowe did not score, he played a key role in goals for Ryan Croasdale and Andy Bond.
Promotion would cap a season in which Rowe has already won player of the year awards and topped the National League scoring charts with 27 goals.
Challinor said: “I think it is a strange one because you look at last season and what he did; he did not win our players’ player of the season last year but this year he did.
“To be honest, that was probably a bit of a surprise to me because I think we are all guilty of taking him for granted because we expect him to score goals.
“He has earned that respect but the ultimate accolade is that other managers throughout the division have voted him the best player in the league over the last two seasons, which is great.”
Having been pipped to last year’s top scorer award by Tranmere Rovers’ Andy Cook, Rowe edged out Eastleigh’s Paul McCallum, who netted on 26 occasions.
It came despite Rowe being rested for the final league game with FC Halifax Town.
McCallum was also rested to ensure the prize was Rowe’s – and he was the man who told the Fylde striker.
Challinor said: “Paul McCallum, funnily enough, followed him on Instagram and asked if he was playing.
“Rowey said no and Paul said the same because he was on 14 yellow cards and could not afford to get suspended.
“Individual accolades are great within a team sport but there are lots and lots of people, especially over the course of the season, that you are going to need to get you through a season.
“Hopefully there can be a bigger prize at the end of the season for the whole club.”