January is a big month for AFC Fylde

AFC Fylde manager Dave Challinor
AFC Fylde manager Dave Challinor

AFC Fylde boss Dave Challinor has stressed again how huge a month this is for the club.

The Coasters are currently mid-table in the National League but this is potentially a season-defining January for them.

It’s a month that could either push them up into the play-off mix or see them tumble towards the bottom of the table.

They are unbeaten so far this month, a run that Challinor wants to continue.

He said: “We said at the start of the month it is a massive month for us with 21 points up for grabs.

“It is a really important time.

“Nothing has changed on that front, we are in decent form.

“Most importantly we are picking up points and that is the important thing at this time of year.

“It does not always have to be pretty; yes we’d like to play well and, if you take care of performances, then the majority of the time results take care of themselves.

“At times, if we have to win a little bit more ugly, then so be it.

“It is a big month for us. We recognise that, the players are very aware and know that this time can have a significant impact on what our targets are for the rest of the season.

“So we are totally focused on picking up points and putting ourselves in a strong position at the end of January.”

Fylde host Guiseley on Saturday and Challinor is expecting a similar test to the one they had on Tuesday when they drew with Chester.

Like Chester, Guiseley are battling it out at the bottom end of the table but the Coasters’ manager wants an improved performance from the one in midweek.

He said: “They will be very similar to Tuesday, we expect a really tough game.

“Paul (Cox) has come in as a newish manager there and made a lot of changes; in terms of personnel he continues to bring players in.

“They will be the same as any team in this league, regardless of what position they are in.

“They will be organised, they are a strong physical side and it will be a different challenge again.

“You have got to be up to playing against different teams, formations and styles game in game out.

“We expect a really tough, physical game; ultimately for us it is about continuing what we have been doing and, hopefully, being a little bit better than what we were on Tuesday and if we are not great trying to grind out results and wins.

“That will be no different for the next month or so.”