Jim Bentley delighted AFC Fylde are playing in front of fans

AFC Fylde boss Jim Bentley was pleased with his side’s first home game of pre-season and overjoyed to be playing in front of supporters at Mill Farm again.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 12:46 pm

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The Coasters were narrowly beaten 1-0 by Blackburn Rovers in a match entitled the Luke Bennett Celebration Fixture in honour of the Fylde teenager who died in such tragic circumstances in March.

Manager Bentley said afterwards: “After the Squires Gate game (a 4-0 win on Tuesday night) it’s great to be back here in front of fans. We had good opposition and a bit of noise, and that’s what football is all about.

Goalmouth action from Fylde's friendly against Blackburn Rovers

“Every manager, coach and player at any level will tell you football is better in front of spectators. It was fantastic and long may it continue.

“And there was a fantastic turnout for Luke Bennett’s family and a few of his old teammates got on the pitch.”

As for his side’s performance, Bentley added: “There was some good play and some indifferent play but sometimes you have to appreciate the quality of the opposition.

“Their XIs were a bit mixed between experience and under-23s but there was quality all over the pitch and it was a tough game for us.

“At times, certainly in the first half, we were a little cautious and standoffish and let them have the ball rather than being in their faces, but it has been a while since we played matches.

“We’ve been working on defensive shape and there was good evidence of that.

“Everyone got on and we got good minutes for players and no injuries, so now we can look forward to the week ahead.

“We want to continue to build now and get better ready for an exciting season.”

Fylde's next friendly is on Saturday away to Cefn Druids, a Welsh Premier team in Wrexham.

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