First half goals settle friendlyFleetwood Town succumbed to a 2-0 defeat at home to Burnley on Tuesday evening.
Two-goals in the first 26 minutes from Stephen Ward, which was followed up by Marvin Sordell’s penalty condemned the Cod Army to defeat, on the Fylde Coast.
A positive for Graham Alexander’s side was the return of Jamille Matt to the Highbury turf, as a second-half substitute.
In the opening few minutes, midfielder Jimmy Ryan glanced a header just wide of the post, from Lyle Della-Verde’s out swinging free-kick.
It would be Fleetwood who would be the first side to test either keeper – as Ryan stung the palms of Tom Heaton with a left-footed drive from just outside the penalty area.
Town’s next opening would come after 10 minutes, when the ball dropped to midfielder Antoni Sarcevic on the right, though his fierce effort was deflected away by Michael Keane.
Burnley took the lead in the contest after 14 minutes, courtesy of Ward, who latched onto a neat interchange of play from Marvin Sordell and Kightly, to see his initial shot saved by Chris Maxwell, only to tap home the re-bound.
Burnley were carrying a threat to the Cod Army back-line, with firstly Sordell seeing his shot deflected wide, before Chris Maxwell parried Matthew Taylor’s long-range pile-driver.
The visitors were awarded a penalty after 26 minutes, when Sordell was felled by Stevie Jordan. Sordell stepped up to take the resulting spot-kick, and coolly dispatched.
Fleetwood almost found a route back into proceedings, after Sarcevic ran onto Conor McLaughlin’s lofted pass, though having rounded Heaton, he shot agonisingly wide from a tight angle.
Town’s back-line had to be alert towards the closing stages of the first-half at Highbury – with George Boyd and Jelle Vossen both denied.
Jimmy Ryan’s shot from inside the area was blocked by a sea of Yellow shirts, as Burnley hung on into the half-time interval.
As the second-half resumed, Fleetwood went in search of a goal, with Sarcevic playing Declan McManus through, with skipper Ben Mee intercepting the ball away from the Scottish youngster.
On the hour, new recruit Lyle Delle-Verde whipped a teasing ball into the heart of the Burnley box, but it was well cleared by the visiting defence.
Up the other end, Kightly beat his man and forced Maxwell into a low save after 66 minutes.
Town then had a flurry of chances, as Jimmy Ryan thread the ball through to Sanogo, whose shot was well blocked.
With 20 minutes to play, Fleetwood’s new signing Bobby Grant rifled a low strike across goal, which flew inches wide of Heaton’s far post.
Burnley substitute Lukas Jutkiewicz then trickled a right-footed shot into the side-netting, as the Clarets looked for a third goal to kill of the encounter.
Fleetwood continued to work hard towards the end, but were unable to get past a resilient Championship defence.