REPORT | AFC Fylde 2-0 Wrexham

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Tue 24 Oct 2017

Wrexham will be glad to see the back of the Coasters after two defeats in 10-days at the Mill Farm Stadium.

Goals in either half from Jonny Smith, after just eight minutes, and then Jack Muldoon in the closing stages – ended the Reds impressive unbeaten league run.

In truth though, it was no more than they deserved with a display that belied their lowly league position.

Shaun Pearson missed out after being booked for the fifth time this season on Saturday, with Olly Marx taking over at the back alongside Manny Smith. In midfield, Sam Wedgbury returned from illness and took over from Mark Carrington.

An early run and cross by Marcus Kelly was aimed at Paul Rutherford closing in from the other wing, but try as he might he couldn’t stretch his leg any further as the ball flew across the face of the home goal.

The visitors went behind on eight minutes after we conceded a free kick against ex-Red Johnny Smith. This saw Danny Rowe take the kick from 30 yards, which arrowed in on goal and Dunn could only parry, allowing the Fylde forward Smith to nip in and score from close range.

Smith was causing more problems on 12 minutes, when he ran across the Wrexham box, but there were plenty of yellow shirts back to cover and block the Scouser’s shot.

The home side were enjoying the better of possession as the first half made its way passed the 30-minute mark. Dunn having to punch clear from the head of Jonny Smith before Francis-Angol won a free kick on the line and only inches outside the Wrexham area.

Then another free kick from Rowe was again only blocked by Dunn in the six-yard box, allowing Jack Muldoon to pounce, but the keeper recovered to block the Fylde man’s effort.

The swirling wind and rain were making conditions difficult for both teams, but the Coasters were taking advantage of having the wind at their backs.

Kevin Roberts was on the ground receiving treatment after 37 minutes and he was replaced by Mark Carrington.

Moments later, Holroyd won himself a free kick on the left, using his pace to draw the offence for the home defence. Rutherford whipped in the cross, but the white shirts stood firm to clear the danger.

The Reds had to wait until the 43rd minute before we registered our first effort on the home goal, Reid winning the ball 25-yards out, turning his marker and firing at keeper Jay Lynch. The Fylde stopper had to dive to his right to push it away, but with no attacking player closing in, the home defence could clear the danger.

Ht 1-0

Wrexham started the second period in a more adventurous mood and after several attacks, a James Jennings free kick was floated in the home box.

Then Fylde hit straight back as Rowe slipped Andy Bond in for a shot from distance that Dunn had to dive low to his right to block, but with no attackers closing in he was able to get to his feet and collect the loose ball.

The slippery surface with continuous rain, was making life difficult for both keepers, trying to deal with an effort that came at them off the pitch.  

Fylde then enjoyed a succession of corners from both sides of the pitch, as the mass ranks of Wrexham players defender their goal in front of the large travelling support.

On the hour, Ntumba Massanka was sent on for Alex Reid.

Then Carrington had to be on his toes to deny the speeding Jonny Smith who had broken into the Wrexham ‘D’, with the defender forcing the ball out for a throw in.

On 69 minutes, Akil Wright took a knock to the head and play was held up for several minutes to allow treatment to the midfielder, who was being watched by several members of the Fleetwood Town coaching staff.

Rowe then showed why his such a dangerous predator, when out of nothing he found space some 30-yards from goal, and fired an effort that tested Dunn, who needed a two-handed save to push the ball away.

A minute later, and another former Racecourse man Sam Finley also pulled the trigger on a long-range effort that had Dunn diving to his right again to keep the ball out.

A Wrexham free kick, from 15-yards into the Fylde half, carried just a little too high as it beat everyone and passed only a foot or two passed the back post.

Muldoon evaded two tackles 20-yards from goal before firing on target and Dunn was once again to the rescue. Then Rowe got on the end of a Bond cross, but saw his header carry high over Dunn’s cross bar.

This pressure was going to finally reap some reward and on 77 minutes, Muldoon evaded a series of tackles to fire low into the corner of the Wrexham net, ending any lingering thoughts, the Reds might have had about grabbing a late equaliser.

Mackreth replaced Kelly three minutes later.

Wrexham did have the ball in the Fylde net shortly afterwards, but the flag went up against both Holroyd and Massanka!

The only yellow card of the night went to Wedgbury, who bundled Muldoon over on the half way line.

Substitute Serhat Tasdemir was the final man in a Fylde overlap and should have added a third for the home side, but he fired wide.

The final whistle sent the travelling supporters home into the Lancashire night, not impressed at this display, which ended our 11-game unbeaten league run.

AFC Fylde: Lynch, Francis-Angol, Tunnicliffe, Bond, Finley (McCready 89), Rowe, Muldoon (Jones 87), J Taylor, J Smith (Tasdemir 85), Burke, Edmundson.
Subs: Grand, Blinkhorn.

Wrexham: Dunn, Roberts (Carrington 37), M Smith, Marx, Jennings, Rutherford, Wright, Wedgbury, Kelly (Mackreth 80), Holroyd, Reid (Massanka 61).
Subs: Dibble, Boden.

Referee: Glen Hart (Teeside)
Attendance: 1,860
Away: 662

Booking -
AFC Fylde:
Findley ( foul)
Wrexham: Wedgbury (83, foul)


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