Fleetwood Town fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat to Shrewsbury Town at Highbury on Saturday afternoon.
Even after Town applied constant pressure on the visitors’ backline for the whole second half, they couldn’t manage to break through, meaning that Tom Bayliss’ first-half goal would be the difference in the Sky Bet League One clash.
The game struggled to entertain in the opening quarter hour but after a game of end-to-end possession, the Cods had a chance when Callum Morton put the ball out wide to Harvey Macadam whose fizzing effort on goal tested the visiting keeper.
The first sign of action from Shrewsbury came as striker Rekiel Pyke drilled an effort just wide of Jay Lynch in the Town goal. Town then came to life again when Lewis Warrington found Paddy Lane, whose effort was on target but didn’t trouble Shrewsbury’s goalkeeper, Marko Marosi too much.
Midway through the first half came the game's opener, when Shrewsbury midfielder Bayliss found space in the Town box in the 30th minute to pick out the top corner. Shrewsbury then had a period of dominance as Steve Cotterill’s side had a flurry of chances but couldn’t double their advantage.
Carlos Mendes-Gomes got involved in proceedings when he had a half chance which forced a save out of Marosi - but nothing came of the resulting corner.
That was it for the first half though, forty-five minutes that didn’t have too much to offer but Town went into the break a goal behind.
The second half began well for the Cods, and they started the better of the two sides. Mendes-Gomes had a chance in the 46th minute, which was wide of the target. After that came an effort by Danny Andrew, whose deflected shot struck the crossbar of Shrewsbury’s goal.
Town then kept up the pressure on the Shropshire visitors as Morton cut inside and came very close to putting the host's level on the scoresheet.
As the game hit the 60-minute mark, the Cods grew ever closer to an elusive equaliser. Andrew this time, whose shot was blocked and Town were awarded two corners in the space of four minutes.
In what was a more eventful half than the first, Town came closest to getting the second goal of the game. Town saw two penalty claims waived away after Morton was pushed in the box. Town defender Shaun Rooney then delivered a great cross into the box and substitute Joe Garner’s header was enough to test Marosi.
Mendes-Gomes, who was mostly involved in the first half had a chance in the 73rd minute when he took the ball around Shrewsbury’s keeper, but his effort was blocked by Taylor Moore.
The Cods still couldn’t find a way back into the match and in fact, were given a lifeline when Jordan Shipley’s powerful effort hit the inside of the post and somehow stayed out.
There was a slight delay in play as Cods skipper Josh Vela came in late on Shrewsbury captain Luke Leahy. Then the Shrewsbury number three caused a couple of minutes of disarray as the play didn’t resume for a few minutes.
The Cods, after all their efforts in the second half, couldn’t find a leveller and the game ended in a narrow, 0-1 defeat.
Town XI: Lynch (GK), Andrew, Mendes-Gomes (Batty 74’), Vela (C), Morton, Lane (J. Garner 57’), Warrington (Wiredu 85’), Rooney, Macadam (Hayes 85’), Earl, Baker.
Unused subs: Stolarczyk (GK), Holgate, Johnston.
Shrews XI: Marosi (GK), Leahy (C), Moore, Winchester, Pyke (Bowman 73’), Bennett, Bayliss, Dunkley, Saydee (Street 45’), Shipley, Flanagan.
Unused subs: Burgoyne (GK), O’Brien, Bloxham, Caton, Bailey.