Dave Challinor: ‘I don’t do the long throw any more. Doctor’s orders’

The former Tranmere captain, a record breaker with his long throws, is manager of the AFC Fylde side who take on Wigan in the FA Cup second round on Friday – and he is no stranger to inflicting cup upsets

Look closely at the AFC Fylde kit when the National League side take on Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup on Friday night, and you will find the extent of the club’s ambition is worn on their sleeve. A 15-year plan was put in place when new owners became involved in what was then Kirkham and Wesham in 2007, one that envisaged Football League status being achieved by the year 2022. Five promotions later, Fylde stand on the threshold of their dream. The next promotion will make it come true, and just to make sure no one loses sight of the objective, 2022 is woven into the players’ shirts.

This is precisely the sort of structured planning and growth that persuaded the former Tranmere captain Dave Challinor to leave Colwyn Bay to throw in his lot with Fylde six years ago. It seemed a backward step for a young manager at the time – Fylde were two divisions lower – but everything sketched out at his interview has since come to pass, including the gleaming new stadium the club moved into last season.

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