WITH the business end of the National League season fast appoaching, few would have predicted that AFC Fylde would be the division’s top scorers with 54 goals.

The Lancashire outfit also boast the league’s most lethal marksman in 16-goal Daniel Rowe and, with another Coasters’ dangerman, Henry Jones, raring to go again after injury, it gives Eastleigh plenty to think about ahead of Saturday's head-to-head at Mill Farm.

The 12th-placed Spitfires, though, will travel up today in good heart after a storming run of four straight January victories which has propelled them to within seven points of the play-off zone.

Until last weekend, Fylde were sitting aloft the (six-game) form chart, but their 1-0 loss at Woking – halting a seven-game unbeaten run – saw them knocked off their perch by Andy Hessenthaler’s Spitfires who are now eight league games without defeat.

Unsurprisingly Hessenthaler isn't daunted by the task ahead, stating: “We’re expecting another difficult game on Saturday, but it’s not one we fear.

“We’ll go up with confidence and we’ll look to win it. We’re averaging more than two points a game now and we’ve got to keep that going.”

Fylde, who drew 2-2 at the Silverlake in September, are doing incredibly well in their first season up as National League North champions, sitting ninth.

“They’ve been excellent,” added Hessenthaler. “They’ve got good, young players who move the ball well and the lad Rowe up front is the leading scorer.”

Eastleigh midfielder Danny Hollands is struggling with a groin problem and the Spitfires are sweating on the fitness of last Saturday’s hat-trick hero Chris Zebroski who felt his hamstring towards the end of the 4-3 Hartlepool win.

But fit-again centre-back Ryan Cresswell got some valuable minutes in Tuesday’s 2-0 Hampshire FA Senior Cup quarter-final defeat by AFC Bournemouth’s under-21s, as did Ryan Broom, Harvey Read, Frazer Shaw and James Constable - plus goalkeeper Mark Childs on his return from a long-term knee injury.

“We respected the cup with some of the players we fielded and the game served its purpose,” said Hessenthaler. “It was a good workout.

“The biggest positive for myself was having four under-18s out on the pitch, plus a 16-year-old at right-back.”

“I thought Matt Simm, who is only 16 and who was playing against a tricky little left-winger and a left-back who has played international football, was excellent for us.”