STEVEN Stones’ impressive form continued on Sunday in an impressive display by Fylingdales’ last home game of another promotion-chasing season.
FFC named a strong team with a large squad to pick from. Bay star Jake Faichney was injured with an ankle problem but kept on the bench.
Chris Shardlow returned from his intensive Alps training regime to his midfield partner Paddy Chandler. With both keepers injured, John Cuffling went between the sticks, giving an opportunity for the impressive Paul Watson at centre back.
Pirates, who are in the lower half of the table, are a side to watch out for. Their lowly status is down to a poor disciplinary record and organisation rather than skill. Both these things were illustrated by the Scarborough team in an otherwise great game.
FFC dominated the first half but did not play to their strengths. Dan Shackleton characteristically ran at the Pirates’ defence all game and although he tripped himself up twice through running so fast was lucky to escape a card for diving, it was his perseverance after a long ball by Mark Brennan that gave him and FFC’s first goal.
Shackleton sunk the pirates defence by placing an unstoppable shot into the top corner.
Two further one-on-ones were missed and going into half-time, ‘Dales knew that despite a domineering performance they must do much better to secure the win.
Right winger Steve Stones shone throughout and was involved all over the pitch, setting an example for his team-mates.
Left back Brennan, who an excellent first half, had to be replaced due to injury, with Mitch Tuby moving into in midfield and Tommy Gray at right back. Faichney could not bear to watch from the sidelines and requested to come on to help secure a win.
It took Faichney 10 minutes to score and after creating an opportunity from a tight angle, he fired home for 2-0.
On this, Pirates’ heads dropped and tempers flared but nothing can stop the FFC machine in full flow.
Dales passed the ball well throughout the second half and created plenty of chances.
After solidifying his striker position in recent weeks due to the injured Simon Forde, Andy McGreavy was due a goal. On the same day that Fernando Torres also broke his scoring duck, McGreavy also got on the score sheet when a pass came to him on the edge of the area and he coolly beat the Pirates keeper with a stunning rifled low shot.
FFC brought on Gary Tuby midway through the second half and his impressive contributions were rewarded when he won the ball back from the Pirates defence and scored a great goal for FFC’s fourth.
A solid and high class performance meant FFC have won every game in the league for the past three months. After a draw for Seamer and and Itis Itis loss over the weekend it is now completely in Dales’ hands to claim second pace and automatic promotion.
FFC’s development team contested a second game after the match, losing 5-2 to Whitby Wanderers in a friendly but football was the winner on this fine spring Sunday for all the players and large crowd at Stadio del Thorpe.
This Sunday, FFC go to Oliver’s Mount to play Trafalgar Reserves, 10.30am kick-off.
Man of the match: Steve Stones; match ball sponsor: Rob Hopper Drylining
Fylingdales FC 4 Pirates 0