Coasters ready to renew Harriers rivalry

AFC Fylde boss Dave Challinor has an FA Cup objective
AFC Fylde boss Dave Challinor has an FA Cup objective

AFC Fylde aim to make a significant step in their history by progressing to the second round of the FA Cup for the first time tomorrow.

Standing in their way at Mill Farm are Kidderminster Harriers and, for once in the first round, the Coasters will go into the tie as favourites, not underdogs.

The competing teams know each other well as they were promotion rivals in Vanarama National League North, fighting out 2-2 and 3-3 draws last season.

The latter match saw Fylde scrape a point deep into stoppage time on an eventful day when there were three sendings-off, two of which were rescinded.

Coasters’ manager Dave Challinor described it as a ‘massive’ game with so much at stake for the victors.

The Harriers have already claimed one scalp from the league above them, beating Chester in the last round to set up their trip to Fylde.

He said: “Kidderminster were going for promotion along with us last season; we know them well, but there has been a big turnaround in players since then.

“Kidderminster have not done as well as they have wanted so far this season (they are currently 10th in National League North) but we know we are in for a tough game.

“It is our chance to continue our winning run and get to the second round, which we have never done before.”

Challinor reports no injury worries in the run-up to the match; during the week Fylde played a private friendly at Kellamergh Park against Morecambe and the two sides fought out a 3-3 draw.

Fylde go into the match after successive wins against Wrexham in the league and cup and a 4-0 win against Solihull Moors, which elicited a huge compliment from the vanquished manager Richard Money.

He has since left the club, but went on record as saying that Fylde were the best team he had seen in the league this season.

Challinor said: “Richard Money made his comments to me after the match and I didn’t know he would go public with them until I saw him quoted later.

“It was very complimentary and it makes a change from hearing things after the Wrexham league match that it was the worst they had played this season.

“What Richard said just underlines the fact that there is not much difference between the top and bottom and if you string a few results together it can get you right up the table.”