Quality is Better the Quantity
Blackpool’s third team were expecting a tough game at home to the pre-season title favourites Rochdale second team, a team fresh from a 13-0 victory the week before. However Blackpool were given an unexpected pre-game boost when presented with the opposition team card to find they had travelled with only 9 players.
Unfortunately, any thoughts of a shock victory were quickly dispelled as Rochdale made light of their lack of numbers to quickly move into a 2-0 lead with some precise passing moves and clinical finishing whilst at the other end Blackpool were unable to move the ball with enough speed and accuracy to take advantage of the space offered at the back. Then suddenly a fine Blackpool passing move ended up with Will Pickles outside the opposition D. He cleverly beat his defender and launched a precision strike into the bottom corner leaving the Rochdale keeper with no chance. 2-1 and back in the game.
Blackpool continued to try and push forwards in search of more goals but during the remainder of the first half were punished for losing the ball in their own half and not tracking the Rochdale players closely enough as the extra quality of the away team resulted in the half time score line being 5-1 to the visitors.
After a half time discussion and a slight change of tactics, the second half proved to be a more even affair. Keiffer Walker-Earnshaw pulled a goal back for the home team and then, after a number of chances were spurned at both ends, Matthew Atherton scored from a well worked short corner to make it 5-3 with 7 minutes remaining. With the Rochdale team clearly tiring, could a miraculous comeback be on? Unfortunately not as the away team summoned the energy for one last attacking burst and scored a decisive goal that ended the Blackpool comeback.
Final score Blackpool 3-6 Rochdale
Blackpool’s man of the match was Will Pickles.