Writer: Eamonn Moore
Date:Thursday February 11 2010
After capitulating to a 3-1 loss at home, Blackpool got their revenge at Deepdale with a win that all but secured Championship safety.
Backed by around 5,000 fans, the Seasiders lined up thus: Rachubka, Crainey, Edwards, Barker, Baptiste, Vaughan, Adam, Southern, O'Donovan, Campbell, Burgess. Subs: Gilks, Walton, Jorgensen, Ormerod, Hughes.
The first chance of the lovely Spring afternoon fell to Ben Burgess, who saw his header turned behind by Andy Lonergan for a corner.
At the other end, Jon Parkin headed wide from a Nobber corner as the Lilywhites looked to get a grip on the game.
Stephen Elliott then headed just wide for Preston from an Eddie Nolan cross, before Keith Southern's fantastic last ditch challenge prevented the aforementioned Nolan from pulling the trigger.
The Nobbers then hit the post on the quarter hour mark through a Ross Wallace freekick.
Elliott then went close again on two occaisions, but could only direct his attempts wide of Paul Rachubka's goal on both occasions.
Charlie Adam was enjoying a virtuoso game in the middle of the park, and after bursting through the Preston midfield yet again he layed the ball off to Burgess whose finish was parried away by Lonergan.
At the other end, Paul Rachubka demonstrated his fine reflexes by turned an Elliott shot behind for a corner.
'Pool forced a corner of their own on the half hour, but Burgess could only head the resulting chance wide.
Paul McKenna then smashed a shot just over the bar after the Seasiders backed off the experienced midfielder.
Just before the break, the deadlock was finally broken. Both sides had had their chances, but it was the Seasiders who opened the scoring.
Adam burst through the midfield yet again and this time elected to shoot, driving low past Lonergan and in off the post.
Preston had the opening chance of the second half; Jon Parkin's shot being saved by Rachubka.
Charlie Adam then nearly made it 2-0 with a smashing low strike, but Billy Jones was on hand to divert the ball out for a corner. Ben Burgess then headed Adam's corner straight at Lonergan.
Adam was clealy revelling in his role as Preston's chief tormentor and was running the game for the Seasiders; DJ Campbell perhaps should have made it 2-0 after Adam had sent him clear.
On the hour Adam smashed a freekick just wide as Tony Parkes' side searched for a killer second goal.
David Vaughan nearly found it after being teed up by Burgess, but he drove his finish right across the face of the goal.
Brett Ormerod came on on 65 minutes for the ineffective O'Donovan in the Seasiders first change, whilst Neil Mellor waddled onto the pitch alongside Simon Whaley as the Nobbers replaced Elliott and Chris Sedgwick.
Mellor's first touch saw him remarkably get off the ground to head just wide.
With 15 minutes left, Simon Walton came on for his Blackpool debut, replacing Alex Baptiste who had been forced off with cramp.
DJ Campbell was then denied a brilliant goal by some inadvertent Sean St. Ledger who cluelessly blocked the livewire striker's overhead kick.
With four minutes to go we had another reason to laugh at our neighbours as it took their fans an age to realise that St. Ledger's goal had been disallowed for a push on Shaun Barker.
Darren Carter then replaced Lee Williamson whilst the Seasiders went 4-5-1 with Jorgensen replacing Campbell.
Preston pushed for an equaliser in the dying minutes, but the Seasiders defence held firm and three crucial and brilliant points were in the proverbial bag.
Date:Thursday February 11 2010
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