3 Short Corners, 2 Penalty Flicks, 1 Lucky Winner

Blackpool Men’s 1s 3-2 Oxton Men’s 3s

by Peter Latimer

After last week’s relatively disastrous draw away in rainy Southport, Blackpool were glad to be back playing at Stanley Park on a lovely sunny day.

Oxton were the visitors, and they had given Blackpool a hard match earlier in the season, and they started the brighter attacking with gusto in the first ten minutes. They were perhaps unlucky to score and had a couple of early short corners with shots just going wide.

In contrast Blackpool are clinical at short corners and scored from their first one with an Ian Swaine strike. A few minutes later they were awarded a second short corner, and a second goal followed, this time by Steve Whitley following up on Dave Morgan’s initial shot which hit the post.

Oxton were slightly lucky to get a goal back when several Blackpool defenders stopped as they had heard a whistle, but it had come from the Ladies match on the neighbouring pitch, and in the meantime one of the young skillful attackers had snuck into the top of the D and fired off a great shot into the goal.

Blackpool went on the attack once again, and man of the match Dan Woodman dribbled down the right wing from defence to attack, across the back line and sucked Oxton into making a foul, resulting in another short corner. A third goal in three short corners was the end product with an unstoppable Kieran Harris drag flick producing the goods.

Oxton had a long lecture at half time from their manager and they came out attacking once more. Blackpool’s defence generally had the better of them until conceding a short corner and then the incoming shot hit Pete Latimer’s foot on the line by the post. A penalty flick was rightly awarded and the Oxton striker made no mistake, so back to 3-2 and Oxton were right back in the game.

Minutes later with Blackpool looking to restore their two goal advantage, they had a short corner but it broke down and Oxton counter-attacked at pace. They passed the ball well, dissected the defence and launched a shot which hit Pete Latimer on the leg, as he tried to defend the open goal. Once again a penalty flick was awarded. However this time, the Oxton striker fluffed his flick and Nick Rainbow had the time to make the save with his legs and save Blackpool’s one goal lead.

Both sides attacked looking for the next important goal, but neither side were able to break down the defences. Blackpool held on for the win, and were grateful for the final whistle and they knew they’d been in a fight and were lucky to come away with all three points.

Although winning, they have lost first place to Lymm due to them thrashing Southport 9-0, obviously not the same line-up that we played last week! [No suggestion of foul play, as most of the teams in this division seem to have much better home teams to their away sides] However with Carlisle only managing one point from their two games, automatic promotion for both Lymm and Blackpool is ever closer, and of course their big match against each other is now only two week away!

© Peter Latimer 13/2/11

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