Skelmersdale United 0 AFC Fylde 4: Full report

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Danny Rowe bagged a hat-trick to book Fylde’s passage into the second of the FA Trophy as this long-awaited replay finally went ahead four weeks after the teams shared eight goals at Kellamergh Park.

A late goal from substitute Matt Blinkhorn rounded off a comforable night for Fylde in a match switched to Salford’s AJ Bell Stadium to ensure it went ahead after three postponements at Skem, meaning the winners will be able to play their second-round tie away to Eastbourne Borough on schedule this Saturday.

Manager Dave Challinor named a strong starting line-up that included a rare start for Matt Urwin in goal and a return to the midfield for Brad Barnes and Matty Hughes after injury.

Dion Charles fashioned the first opening of the match, when his shot was deflected narrowly wide.

A goalmouth scramble from the resultant corner saw first Josh Langley and then Danny Lloyd denied by Skem stopper Martin Fearon.

The ‘away’ side were on top in the opening exchanges and Rowe tried his luck from distance on five minutes, but shot well over

The deadlock was duly broken after seven minutes, when in-form frontman Rowe cleverly flicked home Charles’ corner.

The driving rain, which has blighted this tie, was causing problems for both sides. Skem’s best chance of the first 15 minutes came when an inswinging corner was turned around the post by Urwin.

A first-rate Fylde move on 20 minutes almost led to a second goal when Matty Hughes’ dangerous cross was narrowly missed by Lloyd at the near post.

Skem were presented with a shooting chance from a central free-kick on 25 minutes but Kenny Strickland fired his effort straight into the wall.

There was little between the sides as the game reached the half-hour mark and Charles was guilty of missing a glorious chance, sending a free header wide from Danny Lloyd’s right-wing cross.

Skem had the last chance before the interval but former striker Issac Kusaloka’s effort from the edge of the area looped over the bar.

The rain persisted in the second half as Skem built momentum but struggled to test the Fylde defence.

Rowe saw his curling 25-yard effort turned around the post of 52 minutes, then Skem had their best chance yet when Chris Almond’s unchallenged header from 10 yards flashed a foot wide.

The Coasters doubled their lead with a goal of quality on 55 minutes, when Charles burst down the right before delivering a pin-point through-ball for Rowe to chip the keeper with a first-time finish.

Fylde were in the ascendancy and Fylde fired narrowly over, though Skem remained a threat and Urwin saved from Kusaloka with his feet before stopping Strickland’s low free-kick.

Sam Finley should have given Fylde more breathing space on 70 minutes, but skewed his effort wide when clean through after exchanging passes with Rowe.

More chances went untaken as Gerard Kinsella volleyed over from Skem, after Urwin had punched clear to the edge of the box, then a minute later Fylde substitute Josh Wilson lashed over when well placed in the box.

Rowe finally put the game to bed with his fourth goal in two games five minutes from time, rolling the ball into an empty net and Finley had dispossessed a defender and unselfishly teed up his team-mate for a hat-trick.

Blinkhorn had been on the pitch less than a minute when he iced the cake, flicking Lloyd’s cross into the far corner.

Fylde: Urwin, C Hughes, Langley, Hannigan, Whittle, Barnes (Baker 71), Finley (Blinkhorn 89), M. Hughes, Charles (Wilson 71), Lloyd, Rowe.