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King’s Lynn win final game of the season – but are denied automatic promotion in the National League North by AFC Fylde





King’s Lynn Town 2 Curzon Ashton 0

King's Lynn Town were denied automatic promotion on the final day of the season - and the play-offs are next on the horizon – despite beating Curzon Ashton 2-0 at The Walks.

The Linnets held up their end of the bargain by beating the Nash in front of a bumper final day attendance of 2380, but AFC Fylde also won by the same score at Bradford Park Avenue to clinch the league title by just two points.

It was all going perfectly for the Linnets after Gold Omotayo gave them an early lead with a header.

Lynn were back on top of the pile for all of 19 minutes before news began to filter through that the Coasters had taken the lead in Yorkshire - and that's the way it stayed for the remainder of the afternoon.

It is a crushing blow for Lynn after winning their final seven games of the campaign and manager Mark Hughes will now have to prepare his players for a second bite of the cherry in the play-offs.

Lynn, who were reduced to ten men for the final few minutes after Ben Stephens saw red, can take huge heart going into the next stage after taking the title race down to the final weekend of the season.

King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith
King's Lynn Town v Curzon Ashton at The Walks this afternoon. Pictures: Tim Smith

Visiting Curzon Ashton - chasing one of the play-off the spots - were quick out of the blocks and came within inches of taking the lead in the opening two minutes when Devon Mathews turned Joshua Hancock's centre just wide of the target.

But Lynn were soon into their stride with two good opportunities of their own.

Josh Coulson saw his header cleared off the line by Thomas Peers from a Michael Clunan corner.

A minute later, Josh Barrett's deft ball over the top picked out Ben Stephens whose lob was just over the woodwork.

The home side maintained their early pressure and Stephens was unable to get a clear shot on target after Christian Oxlade-Chamberlain's deep cross was headed into his path by Gold Omotayo.

The opener arrived in the 16th minute as Aaron Jones darted down the left and crossed for Omotayo to head home at the far post.

Matthews gave Lynn a timely reminder of their capabilities after going close from a corner as the home side held onto their slender advantage going into the interval.

Goalkeeper Tommy Dixon-Hodge with a brilliant save to deny Thomas Peers an equaliser seven minutes into the second half.

Lynn doubled their advantage on the hour-mark - but their second goal also came at a cost.

A brilliant ball from Theo Widdrington, who appeared to injure his hamstring in the process, picked out Barrett who did the rest with a brilliant finish.

No sooner had Lynn added a second - AFC Fylde did the same.

Defender Josh Coulson threatened to score for a third successive game with 18 minutes remaining - but his header from a Clunan corner cleared the woodwork.

Stephens was shown a straight red card with ten minutes remaining and Lynn will have to make do without his services in the play-offs, where they will host the winners of the game between Kidderminster Harriers and Alfreton Town – who face each other on Wednesday night – on Sunday, May 6.

So tight were the places from fourth to seventh in the National League North standings, Lynn’s play-off opponents changed no fewer than three times in the final few minutes of a dramatic afternoon.

King's Lynn Town: Dixon-Hodge, Jones (Denton 50), Crowther, Coulson, Callan-McFadden, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Widdrington (Hargreaves 65), Clunan, Barrett (Ponticelli 90), Stephens, Omotayo. Subs not used: Scott, Hughes, Hargreaves

Curzon Ashton: Ollerenshaw, Mahon, Poscha, Waring, Matthews, Hayhurst, Barton, Boyle (Armstrong 71), Hancock (Richards 67), Peers, Spencer. Subs: Walker, Hogan.

Attendance: 2,380.



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