Fleetwood made the 650 mile round trip to Plymouth worthwhile as they recorded a fine 2-1 victory.
Jordy Hiwula’s fourth goal of the season in the second half put Town ahead, before two goals in stoppage time meant an exhilarating finish to the match. Amari’i Bell doubled the lead, before Alex Fletcher headed merely a consolation in the 94th minute.
After wringing the changes in Town’s 2-1 win over Morecambe in the Checkatrade Trophy in midweek, Uwe Rosler named the same starting line-up that began last Saturday’s home defeat to Charlton Athletic.
Having had a less than desirable start to the season, Argyle had a point to prove and began the game brightly. Graham Carey whipped in an early cross which Cairns dealt with, inside the opening minute.
Up the other end, Town were looking dangerous. Hiwula sprung the offside trap, but couldn’t get a clean connection with Cian Bolger’s long ball over the top, with Kyle Letheren in the Plymouth net first to it.
Plymouth’s Gregg Wylde was the next to have a go in a lively opening ten minutes, with his long range strike taking a slight deflection to send it just over the bar.
Argyle were growing in confidence and began piling on the pressure at a drizzly Home Park. The hosts were looking threatening on the break, especially with Carey, but there was little real end product.
The Cod Army were themselves giving it a go though. A succession of corners came to nothing, but were evening the game out further into the first period. They were given a good chance to create something when Devante Cole was brought down just outside the area, but George Glendon’s free kick was blocked, and then cleared.
In a smart breakaway move, Town very nearly had the lead as Hiwula latched onto the long ball and beat Letheren. Town were a matter of centimeters away from leading as the ball rolled towards the goal, but it was cleared in the final moments off the line by Ryan Edwards.
There was no letup in the liveliness of the contest as chances came and went at both ends, but two tight defensives put paid to any goals in the first half which the hosts probably edged.
The heaven’s opened during the break and the teams re-entered the field to torrential conditions on the Devon coast.
Argyle were very nearly ahead early on in the second half as a free kick from Carey tested the reflexes of Cairns, who produced a fantastic save to deny the midfielder.
The Argyle faithful were really beginning to back their team, who were searching for their first league win since August. With the vocal backing of the fans, Argyle had much more of the second half possession but had as of yet created any danger.
A cruel twist of fortune was to fall Plymouth’s way as much against the run of play, it was Fleetwood who took the lead in the match. Bobby Grant pounced on an error from former Town man Antoni Sarcevic and played a sweet through ball to Hiwula, who couldn’t miss as he struck past Letheren. The 139 Cods behind the goal who had made the mammoth 325-mile journey certainly enjoyed that one!
Town could have been two up just a few moments after the restart as the Cole-Hiwula partnership which has served Rosler’s side so well this season almost produced the good again. A startling run from Cole resulted in him finding his strike partner, but Hiwula’s effort was just over the bar.
With the 1-0 lead in the balance, the Town fans behind the goal at Home Park were certainly the louder of the two sets of supporters as they tried to push Fleetwood to victory.
In the final minutes, Town continued to search for a second but were denied by a resilient Argyle back line, who themselves were pushing forward for an equaliser.
Victory was in the bag in stoppage time as Town made it 2-0 when Bell completed his own mazey run with a powerful low drive in the bottom corner.
It was the perfect finish to a match that Town deserved to win, but it still wasn’t over. From the restart, Argyle got themselves back into the game with the last kick of the game, as Fletcher headed past Cairns.
The breathless stoppage time was eventually over as the ref called time and confirm Fleetwood second victory in 5 days.
Plymouth Argyle XI: Letheren (GK), Sawyer ©, Songo’o, Edwards, Ness, Sarcevic (Fletcher), Carey, Blisset, Jervis (Lameiras), Threlkeld (Taylor-Sinclair) Wylde.
Subs not used: Ciftci, Grant, Fox, Cooper (GK).
Fleetwood Town XI: Cairns (GK), Coyle, Bell, Eastham, Pond ©, Hiwula (Burns), Dempsey, Grant, Bolger, Glendon (O’Neill) Cole.
Subs not used; Neal (GK), Hunter, Schwabl, Sowerby, Cargill.
Referee: Craig Hicks
Attendance: 8064 (139 away)