Blackpool’s third team were defeated 2-1 at home to Preston 6th team.
The first half was an even encounter with both teams playing some good passing hockey through the midfield but lacking the quality with the final pass needed to create clear cut opportunities. From Blackpool’s point of view there were a number of good positions in the Preston D that failed to result in a shot on target or a short corner. The first significant piece of action came right on half time. Preston were awarded a short corner from which a strike towards goal found a Blackpool foot on the goal line, penalty stroke awarded. It was at this point that Blackpool’s goalkeeper took the advice from his Lancashire coach to face up to the striker, a bit too literally, walking up to the striker and pushing him in the chest (albeit in the most non-threatening way possible). This resulted in a yellow card from the umpire, 5 minutes off the pitch and Blackpool wondering what to do. Eventually Steve Pope partially kitted up to face the flick which was dispatched by the Preston striker leaving the half time score 1-0 to the visitors.
The second half started with Blackpool a player down and with Steve Pope still playing as a kicking back in the Blackpool goal. However Blackpool managed to survive a couple of scares to get through the first 5 minutes with no further damage and then began to gain an ascendancy in midfield. Keiffer Walker-Earnshaw hit the inside of the post with a reverse stick strike and a few minutes later Will Pickles equalised with a precision strike into the corner of the goal. At this point, with Preston visibly tiring in midfield and Blackpool’s youngsters relentlessly pushing forward, it looked like there was only going to be one winner. However, Preston still remained a threat and it was one of their attacks that resulted in the decisive third goal, a powerful strike from the top of the D beating the Blackpool keeper. Still Blackpool pressed forwards in search of an equaliser. A short corner strike from Steve Pope beat the keeper but was cleared off the line. Another Blackpool effort was also scrambled off the line and eventually Blackpool ran out of time and the final whistle blew.
A good performance from Blackpool though and similar performances in the coming weeks should result in some victories. Also some good news for Blackpool, due to Leyland and Chorley’s 3-1 defeat, Blackpool move off the bottom of the table and above them by virtue of more goals scored.
Blackpool’s Man of the Match was Steve Pope