Fleetwood Town 2 Imps 1

City fell to a narrow defeat in Lancashire on Saturday afternoon with Jayden Stockley's brace decisive for the hosts.

The first chance of the match came in the second minute as Ted Bishop found Matty Virtue just outside of Fleetwood’s box. The midfielder was able to turn into the area and fire, but his strike was straight at Joe Lynch.

The hosts’ first chance came a few minutes later following a misunderstanding in City’s defence which led to Jack Marriott being able to fire from inside the Imps’ box, but Jordan Wright was alert and able to push it out for a corner. The following corner was eventually cleared. 

Danny Mandriou almost opened the scoring as Harry Boyes played a ball over the Fleetwood defence in the 12th minute, which the Irishman was able to control before he tried to chip it over Lynch, but it dropped narrowly over the crossbar. 

The hosts took the lead in the 16th minute following a corner where Stockley’s flick found its way inside the far post. 

Fleetwood followed up with another chance in the 20th minute as Marriott got beyond the City defence, but his effort was stopped by Wright. 

A few minutes later City were rewarded with a free-kick in a dangerous area just outside the hosts’ box as Ben House was cleared out by Lewis Warrington. Max Sanders’ effort was blocked by the Fleetwood wall. 

In the 42nd minute Regan Poole was in the right place at the right time as he denied Stockley’s close-range effort on the line.

City then equalised with the last action of the first half. Bishop advanced down Fleetwood’s left before crossing low into the path of Poole who poked the ball underneath Lynch to level the score.

It was a slow start to the second half with City having the majority of possession, but it was Fleetwood who came closest to adding another. An alert Wright denied the hosts a goal as Stockley met a cross at the far post and headed across goal, with City’s goalkeeper at full stretch to claw away the effort.

Another chance for Fleetwood followed in the 60th minute as Stockley fired from outside City’s area, but his effort was too high to trouble Wright. 

City were close to another goal following two corners which eventually led to a City free-kick just outside the hosts’ box as Bishop was brought down. 

Stockley headed Fleetwood into the lead in the 73rd minute following a corner, with the hosts then able to see out the result. 

Fleetwood: Jay Lynch, Brendan Wiredu, Corrie Ndaba, Carlos Mendes Gomes (Harvey Macadam 45’), Josh Vela,  Jayden Stockley, Jack Marriott (Dan Batty 86’) , Lewis Warrington, Harrison Holgate (Phoenix Patterson 69’), Shaun Ronney, Josh Earl. Subs (not used): Stephen McMullan, Toto Nsiala, Carl Johnston, Max McMillan.

Goals: Jayden Stockley (16’, 73’).

City: Jordan Wright, Regan Poole, Harry Boyes, Lewis Montsma (Jack Diamond 36’), Adam Jackson, Max Sanders, Ted Bishop (Tashan Oakley-Boothe 70’), Ben House (Luke Plange 79’), Danny Mandroiu (Dylan Duffy 79’), Lasse Sorensen, Matty Virtue. Subs (not used): Sam Long, Jovon Makama. 

Goals: Poole (45+5’).

Attendance: 3,371.

Referee: Declan Bourne.