AFC Fylde 1 Aldershot Town 0: First-half goal boosts the Coasters’ survival bid

Danny Philliskirk’s first-half goal made all the difference on Saturday as the Coasters made it seven points from three games with victory against Aldershot Town at Mill Farm.
AFC Fylde's Danny Philliskirk    Picture: Steve McLellanAFC Fylde's Danny Philliskirk    Picture: Steve McLellan
AFC Fylde's Danny Philliskirk Picture: Steve McLellan

The midfield man steered home the only goal from close range 20 minutes into the match after his initial penalty was saved by Mitch Walker, following a foul on Mark Yeates.

The Coasters dominated the majority of the encounter, mustering 15 attempts at goal as well as producing a commendable mix of stylish play and graft.

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An early chance provided home fans with early encouragement as Tuesday’s goal hero Alex Whitmore sent Jamie Proctor through against Walker, who smothered the striker and made a smart stop from his sidefooted effort.

Jordan Williams was next to try his luck, Walker again denying him before a crucial Aldershot clearance, while Yeates curled a promising hit just wide from outside the area.

Whitmore then saved the Coasters at the other end shortly afterwards.

Kodi Lyons-Foster’s effort in the box looked destined to put the visitors ahead, only for the defender to make a vital block on the line.

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This would prove doubly crucial just two minutes later, as Fylde pressed once more and Proctor knocked a neat ball through to Yeates.

The Shots’ Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong was unable to move goalside of the Coasters man, subsequently bringing him down.

Philliskirk stepped up and hit a sidefooted shot which Walker parried out, only to be beaten at the second attempt.

Aldershot committed numerous men forward as they looked to get on level terms before the break.

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The pick of their chances came through striker Harry Panayiotou half an hour in, whose rasping drive inside the area was kept out in an unorthodox, but remarkable, manner by the face of Josh Lillis.

Tyler French was on hand to sweep up the immediate danger and keep the Coasters’ lead at half-time.

Despite no clear-cut chances to begin the second half, it was not without an eventful nature with Luke Burke receiving treatment for an injury and a consequent touchline altercation between several members of coaching staff.

That resulted in bookings for goalkeeping coach Lee Jones and Aldershot boss Danny Searle.

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Proctor and Williams both saw efforts flash just wide as the Shots were thwarted by an excellently organised Coasters defensive unit.

The introductions of Tom Walker, Kurt Willoughby and Tom Miller provided a fresh impact and helped the Coasters to see the result out, with Walker not far off from a late free-kick won by Willoughby 25 yards from goal.

Searle’s side pushed for a leveller late on but struggled to muster any clear chances, with key blocks made by the Coasters’ defence to ultimately earn a clean sheet as well as a much-needed and deserved three points.

AFC Fylde: Lillis, Byrne, Whitmore, Croasdale, Proctor (Willoughby 71), Philliskirk, Williams, Burke, Bradley (Walker 67), Yeates (Miller 84), French. Subs not used: Hornby, Thompson.

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Aldershot Town: M Walker, Lyons-Foster, Panayiotou, Drais (Whittingham 46), Finney, Fowler, Chislett (L Walker 71), Berkeley-Agyepong, Koue-Niate, Grant (Van Velzen 82), Tanner. Subs not used: Hall, Wylie.

Referee: Andrew Kitchen.

Attendance: 1,668.