No Fylde reunion for goal hero Allen

Richie Allen
Richie Allen
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AFC Fylde continue their relentless promotion bid tomorrow when they travel to face a Salford City side without one-time Coasters’ goalscoring hero Richie Allen.

Allen was synonymous with Fylde’s climb up the non-league leader, including an appearance in the victorious 2008 FA Vase winning team.

He left the club last season and part of the transfer deal was that would not play in any matches against his former team, hence his absence tomorrow for this attractive Vanarama National League North clash.

Explaining the unusual circumstances of the transfer, AFC Fylde manager Dave Challinor said: “When Richie left us, we could have asked a transfer fee for him, which we didn’t.

“But there was a stipulation that he would not play against us.

“It was just a question of covering ourselves.”

One former Coasters’ player likely to be in action tomorrow is Bradley Barnes, the former Coasters’ skipper, in a match that pits the top side Fylde and third-placed Salford City.

The two sides are separated by 12 points, having played the same number of matches.

Another player who is likely to appear against Fylde is Nick Haughton, who has rejoined Salford from Fleetwood Town on a loan deal until the end of the season.

It is Haughton’s second loan spell at Salford after creating a favourable impression in his initial period.

Fylde could give a debut to teenager Tom Holland, who has signed on loan from Swansea City.

Challinor revealed that the player had joined the Mill Farm Club in preference to interest from Football League clubs; Barnsley and Crewe were said to be keen.

The Coasters’ manager said: “There was interest in Tom from Football League clubs and he could have just played (Under) 23s football, which is what he had been doing at Swansea anyway.

“Credit to him for wanting to play at our level.

“He knows James Hardy from their days when they were together at Manchester City. James speaks highly of him and Tom has shown a good attitude in training.

“Getting the chance to sign such a promising player is a no-brainer.”

Challinor is holding fire on finalising his line-up until he makes a number of fitness checks.

Andy Bond has been suffering a knock on his foot and had to avoid contact in training earlier in the week, but hopes are high that he will be OK.

Josh Langley and Hardy, who both have hip injuries, are rated at 50-50 to be in contention for the Salford trip.