'Pool Heartbreak at Hawthorns
13th March 2010 - 15:00
The Seasiders were unfortunate not to come away with anything for their efforts in a 3-2 defeat at promotion-chasing West Brom.
Charlie Adam gave 'Pool an early lead but a mistake by David Vaughan gifted Ishmel Miller an equaliser. After the break, Robert Koren smashed home a second for the home side before Brett Ormerod drew level. Once again a Graeme Dorrans penalty was the deciding factor in the game.
Joe Martin continued at left back whilst Stephen Dobbie was preferred on the wing with no Gary Taylor-Fletcher in the squad. Barry Bannan was welcomed back onto the bench.
The home side started the brighter but it only took Ian Holloway's men a couple of minutes to get into their stride. David Vaughan was dropping deep as always to take the pressure off the two centre halves and Blackpool built from there.
And it took all of six minutes for the opening goal. A surge from the middle of midfield by - yeah, you know the name which is coming - Charlie Adam opened up the home defence and he struck a sweet left-footed striker to Scott Carson's right, sending around 1000 travelling supporters wild.
In typical Adam fashion, this came after a horrendous effort just two minutes into the game.
However, the lead didn`t last long. A rare David Vaughan mistake - getting the ball caught under his feet on halfway - allowed Robert Koren to find Ishmel Miller with a beautifully weight pass; the throughball confused Rob Edwards who was totally spun around by it and gave Miller the task of poking through Matt Gilks' legs for 1-1 with just 13 minutes gone.
From then on Ian Holloway`s side looked under the cosh. Their confidence looked shot after the unfortunate West Brom equaliser and the home side really dominated until the break.
Joe Martin was being left all on his own against James Morrison, who always had five yards of space on his marker. This was down to Dobbie not really doing his duty and tracking back and did make the young full back look stupid on occasion.
Roberto Di Matteo's men were on the charge from the 20th minute. Miller hit the post from close range from a corner before Gilks made a stunning point blank save from the rebound. However, his stop fell to an attacker but thankfully was blazed over.
That was one let off for 'Pool and there were more to come. From a corner again, Baptiste nearly put through his own goal but Gilks stopped smartly on the line. Keith Southern also cleared off the line from another set piece.
Miller also missed an absolute sitter at the back post as he headed wide from a Morrison cross.
All their dogged determination and rearguard action nearly paid dividends close to half time for 'Pool when Southern himself broke off the shackles and stormed into the Baggies box before seeing his rasping left footed drive tipped over by Carson.
James Morrison was brought off at half time by Di Matteo and replaced with Giles Barnes, probably due to his lack of productivity on the right hand side despite all the space allowed.
Sadly Ollie's team weren't switched on from the kick off yet again and 8 minutes after the restart were behind.
Robert Koren - who was a thorn in the tangerine side all day - put Albion ahead without doubt the goal of the game, and a goal of many games. He was put clear by Miller (who, by the way, is the complete Championship striker) and sent a rocket past Gilks who didn't move as the ball whistled past his right hand side. It wasn't even placed in the corner, but the sheer force behind the shot was enough.
So, the Seasiders - who were cheered on brilliantly by the travelling tangerines all game - had to rebuild. Dobbie, who had a below par game (mainly because he struggled to come inside and dominate possession as he does at home, perhaps he`s more of an impact sub?) was replaced by Brett Ormerod.
Remarkably one of my articles has been seen to be right, predicting that Ormerod could be the hero of the season. That's what it looked like when just five minutes after being on the field super Brett threw himself at an exquisite reverse-cross by Charlie Adam to thump home the equaliser inside the six yard box with his head.
Everyone went mental, especially with results around the grounds going our way.
But that mental of joy quickly turned to mental of disgust, especially from Holloway, when the Baggies were awarded the most dubious of dubious penalties with little over 10 minutes left.
Joe Martin was caught by a diagonal throughball which found Giles Barnes racing towards goal. The left back, knowing Barnes was breathing down on goal, had to make a tackle. He did do, and fouled the man. Outside the box. However, after a decent game up until that game, referee Moss pointed to the spot - despite Barnes saying the foul was outside the area (apparently).
Dorrans slotted home for 3-2 and thus ended all hopes of a Blackpool comeback. A real sickener. Ben Burgess and Barry Bannan came on but couldn't impact upon the game as hoped.
I'm told that Moss is a West Brom fan, surely not?