FACING Victoria in a classic promotion six-pointer created a lot of pre-match hype and last Sunday’s game at Stadia del Thorpe did not disappoint.
Wintry conditions meant kick-off had to be delayed for an hour but both teams were eager to play.
FFC’s growing competitive squad was missing the injured Barry Hayes and excellent right back Steve Griffith but welcomed to the team Ravenscar defender Tommy Gray, recently recruited by leading WAG Holly Newton.
After whines from a minority of Scarborough-based league players, referee Les Towes was drafted in from Malton and had an excellent match throughout.
Victoria have improved a lot since being beaten by FFC earlier in the season and proved to be a stiff test and a worthy opposition over the course of a classic game of football.
After the delay the game had a frenetic start with both up for an epic battle. FFC quickly took control of the game playing up the hill and with a confidence that only comes from being unbeaten in two months.
After much possession, a superb passing move by ‘Dales led to a perfect Steve Stones cross into the box to meet a perfect volley from class act Jake Faichney who had left the Victoria defence for dead.
The biggest crowd of the season warmed with celebration and FFC continued to create chances.
The lead was doubled on 34 minutes when the Dan Shackleton / Simon Forde combo came together for a classic Forde finish, coolly slotted into the bottom right.
Dales went into half-time completely in control after one of the best first halves of the season.
FFC continued their pressure in the second half and when another quality move through the class FFC midfield went out to the wing, a strong cross was met by a Victoria defender’s arm.
The following penalty was put away with style by Forde for his second to make the game 3-0.
The Scarborough side’s quality began to show as they mounted a fightback.
A great performance by all four FFC defenders meant Victoria would have to find something special and they did through Cameron Malcolm who got one back with a fine low shot.
Both sides battled hard throughout a fair but tough half and an FFC error fell to the feet of the quick Malcolm again and he finished to set up an exciting final 20 minutes.
Super sub Andrew McGreavy and the returning Callum Hartley were brought on to add bite and FFC finished a classic game on top.
Dales are now three points off second place with two games in hand.
This Sunday at 10.30am, ‘Dales are away at league whipping boys Filey Flyers in the cup and must be wary of a potential banana skin.
Also now in the FFC calendar is the WAGS celebration awards night on Saturday 28 January at the Bay Hotel with lots of surprises planned for the village.
Man of the match: Tommy Gray; match ball sponsor: Rob Hopper Drylining
Fylingdales FC 3 Victoria 2