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Match Reports

Fleetwood 2 Stanley 0

McConville sent off in fiery encouter at Highbury

24 August 2019

Sean McConville was sent off as ten-men Stanley lost to Fleetwood in a fiery encounter.

McConville left the field for violent conduct on 74 minutes, after an altercation with Ched Evans, with Evans and Fleetwood’s Wes Burns also booked in the flashpoint.

Stanley were already trailing 2-0 with Paddy Madden scoring in the first half for the Cod Army and Evans firing home a disputed penalty in the second half.

Zaine Francis-Angol came back into the starting XI for the Reds after being banned for Tuesday’s 3-2 loss against Shrewsbury.

Fleetwood bossed the chances in the first half although they did have to make a goalline clearance to deny John Coleman’s men.

Paul Coutts rifled the ball over after a quick breakaway on four minutes, Dimitar Evtimov couldn’t keep hold of a Wes Burns strike but the Stanley defence cleared on 15 minutes while Lewis Coyle tricked his way into space on the right wing but Evtimov denied him from an angle.

Stanley’s first real chance came on 23 minutes when McConville’s long range strike was deflected wide of the far post. From the resulting corner, Fleetwood’s Madden cleared a Dion Charles effort off the line following a scramble.

The Cod Army opened the scoring on 28 minutes with Madden sweeping the ball into the far corner of the net as Stanley failed to clear their lines following good build-up play by Fleetwood around the visitor’s box.

Evtimov denied Ashley Hunter a second with his legs on 33 minutes and winger Hunter raced through on the stroke of half-time. He left Callum Johnson on the floor, as the Reds appealed for a foul with nothing was given, and the winger’s shot was again kept out by Evtimov.

It was end-to-end in the early stages after the break. Hunter volleyed over while Matt Gilks kept out Colby Bishop’s header after Sam Finley’s trickery had forced a corner.

Midfielder Finley was again allowed to run from midfield on 58 minutes but his shot was across the goal and wide – a great chance for the Reds to equalise.

Striker Evans came on as a sub on 63 minutes and he forced Evtimov into a low save on 66 minutes.

The home side were awarded a penalty on 70 minutes when Josh Morris was judged to have been brought down with a combination of Seamus Conneely and Francis-Angol.

Evans had only been on the pitch seven minutes and, while Evtimov dived the right way, the ball tucked into the bottom corner of the net for a 2-0 lead.

Then came the red card for McConville and the game got increasingly heated.

There was appeals for a penalty when sub Offrande Zanzala went down in the area on 84 minutes and referee Peter Wright appeared to give it but then awarded handball against the Stanley striker.

And there was shouts again on 89 minutes when Colby Bishop appeared to be fouled in the area but again the ref waved away the appeals on a day to forget for the Reds.


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