Blackpool made the long journey to Carlisle, knowing that it was potentially more than just a topographical ‘up hill slog’ being able to only field 10 players against a side who put 10 goals past their last opponents without reply.
Season debuts from Sam Roberts, James Slater and Martin Hayes were welcome reinforcements to the diminished Blackpool side
The first 30 seconds saw Blackpool’s Martin Hayes see his shot go narrowly wide as the home side were caught napping. However, soon after that, Carlisle took a grip of the game, taking full advantage of having the extra man. Blackpool were reduced to dogged defending throughout the first half, chasing down players and generally expending all their energy trying to win back the ball from the numerically superior Carlisle side. The pressure finally told and Carlisle broke the deadlock when a loose ball was jabbed beneath keeper, Graeme Kilshaw. Three more goals followed without reply in the first half, and it looked to be a dark day for the travelling Blackpool side.
A half time wake up call was needed, and with the possibility of rescuing points from the game fading, Blackpool looked to dig deep in the second half and salvage some pride from the game.
They duly did this by keeping the Carlisle side out in the second half, and indeed creating a number of chances to reduce the deficit. The game ended 4-0. Blackpool can be encouraged by the grit and determination showed in the second half performance.
This Blackpool side should be a threat to anyone in the league when fielding a full compliment of players. A point they will be looking to prove when they host top of the table Bury this Saturday, in what will be another tough game.
Man of the Match was Keeper, Graeme Kilshaw.