New AFC Fylde manager Jim Bentley has admitted that it is ‘his dream’ to take The Coasters to former club Morecambe in the English Football League next season.

The 43-year-old swapped the Sky Bet League Two club for The National League on Monday, in-turn ending a 17-year association with The Shrimps.

Morecambe took to the field for the first time since Bentley’s departure this afternoon when they took on Leyton Orient at the Globe Arena and they ran out 1-0 winners, a result which keeps them in touch with those sides fighting them for English Football League survival.

Former boss Bentley watched on as his new side could only record a goalless home draw with Dover Athletic. Speaking to The72 after that match, the AFC Fylde boss admitted that it is his dream to see both clubs playing in the English Football League next season.

“I’m pleased for them (Morecambe)” said Bentley. “I want them to win every game and I want us to win every game.

“It would be my dream to play at Morecambe next year with Fylde in the Football League, if not next year then the year after.

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“Obviously, Morecambe are very close to my heart and I want them to do well.

“I spent 17-and-a-half years with them and that was a fantastic win for them today.”

Bentley’s new side AFC Fylde were National League play-off final runners-up last season but he is not looking too far ahead this term with the club competing in a very tough division.

“The most important thing is not to look to far ahead” the AFC Fylde boss admitted. “At the minute, we are not really in the position to be speaking about play-offs and that’s being realistic and honest.

“We are in the bottom half of the league and just above the relegation zone, We’ve got to accept that and just get on with the job in hand.

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“We need to get points on the board as soon as we can, get up the table and as the games run out, you can suddenly start to assess where you are and see whether you can make a late run for the play-offs.

“Ultimately, it’s about getting away from the bottom four. We got a point and kept a clean sheet today, it hasn’t been a good start to the season for Fylde, so we want to get some positivity and ideas on board.”

Despite The Coasters’ failure to defeat a well-drilled Dover Athletic side, new boss Bentley was full of praise for the attitude shown by his players in the match.

He added “The players are giving it their all, they’re competitive, they showed a bit of spirit to come back from 1-0 down on Tuesday and they’ve dug in when they’ve had to today.

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“We’ve got to stop more crosses, especially when you come up against a physical side like Dover but overall, I think we’ve had the better of the play and the better of the chances.

“We could and should have won the game, very much like Tuesday. They’re tight games but the only things that we have touched on really is defensive set plays and a bit of defensive work.

“From that point of view, we kept a clean sheet and we stay unbeaten and we are building that momentum.”

Bentley has a great opportunity to chalk up his first victory as AFC Fylde boss next Saturday when The Coasters travel to seventh tier club Nantwich Town in the Emirates FA Cup first round.


About Author

I am Dan Pentland a writer and reporter for The72 and Chelsea Presser websites and editor and owner of FAWSL Full-Time magazine. Regularly reporting from EFL matches, FAWSL fixtures and various internationals. Completed the 92 in 2015! Contact me on Twitter @danpentlandpcuk or via E-mail [email protected]