Blackpool Men’s first team put in a battling performance against a strong Keswick side at Stanley Park but were edged out 3-2.
Blackpool got off to the worst possible start when several failed attempts to clear the ball from danger resulted in Keswick opening the scoring inside the first 5 minutes. Blackpool rallied to produce a strong defensive display against the quick Keswick forwards, with some committed tackles from Dan Woodman and Rob Abbott keeping them at bay. Blackpool threatened on the counter and found an equaliser after Ian Swaine lifted the ball over the advancing Keswick goalkeeper after a layoff from Dave Morgan.
The second half was as tight as the first, and Blackpool were thankful of Captain Nick Rainbow’s brilliant save low to his left to keep the match all square. Blackpool continued to threaten on the break with James Slater using his pace to his advantage down the right flank. Richard Blacow’s drag flick was deflected inches wide of the post and the game was balanced on a knife edge. Blackpool finally paid the price for giving away possession one too many times and a speculative shot by a Keswick player was deflected off a Blackpool stick past Rainbow for an own goal. Keswick doubled their lead minutes later after an excellent strike from their captain.
Blackpool pushed hard, and despite being reduced to 10 men, gave themselves a glimmer of hope with only minutes to go when Man of the Match Rob Dingle beat the keeper from close range after quick thinking from Simon Thomas and Jordan Payne at a sideline hit. But this proved a mere consolation as the final whistle blew with Blackpool unable to find an equaliser.
(c) Rob Dingle 17/2/13