Match report: Barrow 1 AFC Fylde 3

AFC Fylde gatecrashed the National League play-off party with a gritty victory at struggling Barrow.

Tuesday, 3rd April 2018, 11:26 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th April 2018, 12:01 am
Danny Rowe scores Fylde's second Picture: STEVE MCLELLAN

Winger Jonny Smith put the Coasters in the driving seat only for Nathan Waterston to level by half-time.However, it would be Danny Rowe that would come back to haunt his previous employers with a well-taken strike midway through the second period.Substitute Serhat Tasdemir put the icing on the cake with the final kick of the game to lift Dave Challinor's side above Dover into seventh place.Challinor welcomed back midfielder Sam Finley after his three-match ban, while defender Zaine Francis-Angol dropped out after picking up a knock in Friday's win over Halifax Town.The playing surface was in surprisingly good condition considering the match had been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch the previous day.Former Bluebirds striker Rowe took aim with a trademark thunderbolt early on that looped just over the bar, then defender Simon Grand went closer still from the resulting corner, nodding just wide at the far post.Barrow midfielder Kingsley James headed an ambitious attempt on to the roof of the Fylde goal as both sides made a lively start. Ex-Premier League forward Grant Holt should have put the hosts ahead midway through the half. Luke James raced down to the byeline and delivered a pinpoint cross but the ex-Norwich hitman couldn't get a shot away. Fylde took the lead in the 24th minute as winger Smith attacked from halfway, knocked the ball past the last man and raced through the stroke his shot beyond goalkeeper Steve Arnold.However, the home side were back level within five minutes A long throw into the box reached Waterston, who flicked a header past Jay Lynch from close range. Barrow were looking the more likely as the half wore on and full-back Calum MacDonald wasn’t far away with a dipping free-kick. Scorer Smith went through on goal again but this time Arnold stood firm and parried his powerful left-footed strike as the half ended all square.Former Coaster Dan Jones, on loan from Grimsby, carved the Fylde defence wide open shortly after the restart and it was against the run of play that the visitors regained the lead on 54 minutes. A long ball over the top from Grand was expertly brought down by Rowe on the 18-yard line and he slotted past a helpless Arnold.Rowe looked on course to grab his second just after the hour, when he bullied Ollie Cook and got goal-side before being hauled down on the edge of the area. The referee opted for a free-kick rather than a penalty and the frontman crashed his shot a foot over the bar and halfway back to Lancashire. The hosts were cranking up the pressure and Lynch had to stand up to a fierce effort from Lewis Walters, while Bond cleared a long throw off the goal-line.Fylde were still threatening and Jason Taylor should have put the result beyond doubt when fellow substitute Serhat Tasdemir nicked the ball off Arnold by the corner flag and set up the towering midfielder, whose shot was deflected awayThe three points were sealed with the last action of the evening, when Tasdemir raced clear and added gloss to Fylde's fine second-half display with a neat finish into the far corner.

AFC Fylde: Lynch, Bond, Tunnicliffe, Grand, Burke, Montrose, Finley, Hardy (Taylor 73), Muldoon (Tasdemir 65), Smith (Lawlor 83), Rowe.Subs not used: Jones, Blinkhorn.

Barrow: Arnold, Makoma, MacDonald, Diarra, Cook, Waterston (White 74), Jones, K. James, Holt (Gomis 79), L. James, Walters (Panayiotou 89).Subs not used: Bauress, Diagne.

Referee: Marc Edwards

Attendance: 901 (76 away)