Last-gasp leveller stings Fylde

Michael Barnes
Michael Barnes
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AFC Fylde 2, Worksop Town 2

A last-minute equaliser cost Fylde victory in their first Evo-Stik Northern Premier match for a month.

The Coasters dominated throughout and looked to have secured a vital three points when Adam Farrell struck four minutes from time. However, giant striker Tom Denton’s second goal saw Worksop sneak a point the home side will feel they didn’t deserve

Fylde started the brighter, with both Richie Allen and Michael Barnes causing problems down the flanks. Indeed, the former should have scored after just four minutes.

Further chances soon fell Fylde’s way, the best of them to Barnes whose close-range header was expertly pushed around the post by 42-year-old goalkeeper Paul Bastock. Worksop’s first efforts on target came close to the 20-minute mark, through Denton and Leon Mettam, through neither troubled Ben Hinchliffe in the Fylde goal.

Allen had what looked a legitimate goal ruled out for a foul on Bastock on 29 minutes, the referee ruling he had slid in and stolen the ball from the keeper’s grasp, though it looked a 50/50 ball he was entitled to contest.

The deadlock was broken on 40 minutes, when the visitors stole the lead. After some good build-up play, Ryan Clarke sent a searching ball into a crowded penalty area and Denton reached it first to volley home from close range.

Early in the second half, Worksop squandered four good chances within two minutes. Ashley Burbeary, Matt Young, Denton and Craig King all failed to double the lead but Fylde stayed strong.

After a strong period of possession, Fylde equalised on 57 minutes, when right-back Adam Sumner saw his effort from the edge of the box blocked but Barnes picked up the rebound and fired in from a tight angle.

Joe Booth forced a great save out of Bastock four minutes later and Allen had another fine chance on 70 minutes. He fired into the side-netting when it looked easier to score.

The home side finally scored what looked the winner with time running out. Allen was the provider, swinging the ball in from the left for Farrell to tap in from close range and send the home fans into raptures. However, Denton had the final say as he used his considerable height to head home a deep cross in the dying seconds.

Fylde boss Dave Challinor said: “I was delighted with the performance but frustrated with the result because we deserved to win, and with the chances we had we should have been out of sight.

“But in terms of our ball retention, how we moved it and our patience, I was delighted.

“But again we just haven’t dealt with things at the back. We knew exactly how they’d play and knew what their threats were. Ultimately couldn’t deal with it at the end and it’s cost us.”

Fylde travel to West Yorkshire tomorrow for a rearranged visit to Frickley Athletic, their first away match in the league for five weeks.