It seems a strange thing to say in relation
to a match which saw six goals scored but this was far from
a classic encounter and one in which for long periods nothing
happened but the slow passing of time. Not that this is a
fact which will bother anyone from Mossley much as they arrested
a run of two consecutive defeats with a victory and did so
having had to twice come from behind.
Following a ponderous start the game briefly burst into a
modicum of life in the 12th minute when Fylde centre half
Danny Monkton took full advantage of being left unmarked during
a corner kick to head his side in front. The match then returned
to being a languid affair until it was Mossley's turn to fleetingly
break the tedium midway through the half when Michael Fish
put home side back on level terms with a neat near post header
from a Steve Settle cross.
As far as noteworthy moments go that was it for the opening
period and the prospects for a better second half didn't look
good as both teams continued to toil away to little effect
immediately after the interval.
Finally though the match developed a pulse around the hour
mark and did so in bizarre circumstances. A rush of blood
saw Settle split his own defence wide open with a pass that
put Fylde's Michael Barnes clean through on goal and despite
having to carry the ball some distance, the visiting number
nine kept his nerve to calmly put the ball past the advancing
Peter Collinge and his team back in front.
If he'd applied the same assuredness in finishing not soon
after it's almost certain he'd have given his side the three
points. Instead of doubling his sides advantage though Barnes
sent an easier chance bobbling past the upright. It proved
to be a costly miss too as less than a minute later their
lead was cancelled out for the second time in the match. Chris
McDonagh powered through two challenges on a run into the
penalty area and after playing a short pass out wide to Settle,
the ball was hit low across the face of the six yard box and
and tapped home by Matty Kay.
Another five minutes then elapsed before Settle got the opportunity
to atone for his error which had given Fylde the lead for
the second time when Mossley were awarded, somewhat fortuitously,
a free-kick just outside the visitors penalty area. The Lilywhites
winger stepped up and arced a shot around the wall and towards
the top corner of the goal which substitute keeper Dave Stevenson
did astonishingly well to get a hand on. He only succeeded
however in pushing the powerfully struck effort onto the inside
of the post, from where it bounced across the line to put
Mossley ahead for the first time.
It was a lead that never looked like being lost either as
the home side soaked up the pressure being put on them by
Fylde with little discomfort. In fact for all the possession
the visitors enjoyed in the closing stages of the match, it
was Mossley who always looked the side more likely to score
next through the pace of their breakaway attacks and that's
just what they did with three minutes remaining. Settle cut
in from the right wing and hit a shot which deflected off
a defender and then Matty Kay (who'd began the move three-quarters
of the way back up the pitch) to take it past Stevenson and
seal the win.
The result may be harsh on Fylde but the visitors paid the
price for not taking what few chances they had while Mossley
did and reaped the rewards.
report by SJNR