Brave AFC Fylde go out of FA Cup after valiant battle

Coasters - FA Cup battlers
Coasters - FA Cup battlers
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AFC Fylde put up a superb fight, but lost 3-1 to Millwall at The Den in the first round of the FA Cup.

Manager Dave Challinor's men had held Millwall to 0-0 by half-time, proving more than a match for a team three divisions above them in the football pyramid and belying their underdog status.

The Coasters went close to scoring in that period when Danny Rowe produced a fine effort.

Millwall broke the deadlock on 53 minutes with a goal by Aiden O'Brien, the League One player of the month.

It looked even better for the Lions on the hour mark when Lee Gregory doubled Millwall's advantage.

But AFC Fylde refused to be downhearted and within a couple of minutes, they had pulled a goal back through Alex Whittle, whose effort went in off the post.

Fylde pushed hard for an equaliser in the closing stages, and Whittle's cross just eluded Matty Blinkhorn.

Millwall too had their chances to increase the lead as the match reached a climax, but Coasters' goalkeeper Matt Urwin defied a Lions' attack.

However, the home side were not to be denied.

Steve Morison made it 3-1 for Millwall in the 89th minute.

Even after that blow, AFC Fylde still displayed their fighting spirit and Rowe had a shot parried by the Millwall keeper David Forde, the Republic Of Ireland international.

Attendance: 3,445