Yeovil Town 3 AFC Fylde 2: More away day woe for the Coasters

AFC Fylde striker Kurt Willoughby      Picture: Steve McLellan
AFC Fylde striker Kurt Willoughby Picture: Steve McLellan

Despite a valiant second-half display, AFC Fylde endured a second straight defeat on the road with a 3-2 loss at Yeovil Town.

The in-form home side started the stronger of the two sides and it took just five minutes for them to take the lead after Ryan Croasdale’s foul on Rhys Murphy on the edge of the box.

Murphy was one of three Yeovil Town players around the free-kick and, having had the ball played off to him, struck a powerful right-footed effort that flew through the wall and into the net.

The Glovers remained in the driving seat, Murphy threatening on a couple of more occasions, before the second goal eventually came.

A deflected shot landed to Matthew Worthington, who composed himself before laying it into the path of Myles Hippolite, who made no mistake from 10 yards.

Yeovil kept their momentum, and just seven minutes later, saw Luke Wilkinson’s towering header cleared off the line, before Murphy then had an effort ruled out for offside.

The Coasters grew into the game after the half-hour mark, with Danny Rowe and Jordan Williams combining.

Williams, who had three goals in two coming into the game, worked hard but when Mark Yeates’ cross fell to him, he fired over.

An offside flag denied Danny Philliskirk when he had the ball in the net after Rowe’s long-range free-kick was blocked by the wall.

At the break, the Coasters made a double substitution with Kurt Willoughby and Alex Whitmore replacing James Craigen and Nick Haughton.

This also saw the Coasters move to a back five, with Whitmore joining Neill Byrne and Kyle Jameson at the heart of their defence.

The change worked for Fylde as Willoughby found himself halving the deficit.

After seeing an opportunity go begging earlier in the half, Willoughby pounced to prod home from Jameson’s flick-on.

With the pressure on, the Coasters looked likely to score the next goal, with Willoughby and Williams working tirelessly.

The moment appeared to have arrived as Scott Duxbury unleashed a fierce right-footed shot which was turned onto the post brilliantly by Liam O’Brien.

This proved to be a pivotal moment in the game, however, and the Coasters were made to pay shortly after.

Having been introduced in the second half, Yeovil substitute Jimmy Smith capitalised on Dan Bradley’s mistake to score the Glovers’ third goal.

Fylde gave themselves a fighting chance once again when a fabulous cross from Jameson across the face of goal picked out Willoughby, who netted his second goal.

With five minutes of added time, the hopes of an equaliser slowly began to fade, and despite the corners and long throws in the dying moments, the Coasters could not level.

“I could stand here and say that you’ve got to take the positives from it and that we could, maybe should, have got something from the game,” said Coasters’ boss Dave Challinor afterwards.

“But once again we’ve given ourselves a mountain to climb. You’ve got to show character from minute one, show willingness to do the horrible things and truly compete, and I don’t know if they think, because of the way we play, we don’t have to do the nasty things.”

Yeovil Town: O’Brien, Hutton, Wilkinson, Collins (Bradbury 80), Dickinson, Lee, Worthington, Tilley (Smith 60), Hippolyte, Murphy (Skendi 74), Omotayo. Subs not used: Alcock, D’Ath.

AFC Fylde: Montgomery, Craigen (Whitmore 46), Byrne, Jameson, Duxbury, Croasdale, Philliskirk, Haughton (Willoughby 46), Rowe, Williams, Yeates (Bradley 73). Subs not used: Ngwatala, Lavercombe.

Referee: Savvas Yianni.

Attendance: 2,395.