Date:Sunday September 12 2010
St James' Park
11th September 2010 - 15:00
Blackpool passed their way to another impressive victory at St James' Park yesterday, moving them up to fourth in the Premiership.
The Seasiders again went to a formidable stadium with a brand of attacking football which overawed the opposition, seeing them win 2-0.
Ian Holloway was without Craig Cathcart, Gary Taylor-Fletcher and Alex Baptiste and new signing Richard Kingson so went with Matt Gilks in goal, a defensive four of Neal Eardley, Dekel Keinan, Ian Evatt and Stephen Crainey. The midfield three was made up of Charlie Adam, David Vaughan and Elliot Grandin whilst the front three included new signing DJ Campbell, Luke Varney and Brett Ormerod.
The true attacking principals which saw Pool spank Wigan were back, which fashioned chances for DJ Campbell early on. The £1.2m signing from Leicester City missed the target with an overhead kick in the first few moments but had an easier chance a little later on when he was put through one-on-one with Steve Harper but fluffed his lines with a poor first touch.
The Magpies were perhaps a little guilty of long balls to big Andy Carroll but the aerial prowess of Keinan and Evatt meant the Seasiders came under little problems.
The extra man from midfield Kevin Nolan did break the tangerine midfield, but when he managed to fire shots away, the centre halves threw themselves in the way of flying balls to put their bodies on the line.
Newcastle defender Williamson went close with a header when he rose above Keinan only to see the effort agonisingly hit the post.
The opening goal came just seconds before the half time interval when Luke Varney jinked his way past a couple of United defenders - including the shocking James Perch - before being needlessly hacked down by Alan Smith, which gave referee Lee Mason no choice but to point to the spot.
There was only one man for the job, with Charlie Adam stepping up and stroking the ball left footed to Harper's right to score his first Premier League goal. You have to assume that it is the first of many.
And Adam, along with Vaughan, totally bossed the game from the middle of midfield with the dynamic passing and movement expected by the men in tangerine; Joey Barton and Alan Smith had no real answer for it.
However, Chris Hughton must have said something at half time because the home team came out with a lot more vigour in the second period... which turned the fixture into the Matt Gilks show!
The stops Matt pulled off yesterday were fantastic and easily his best performance in a tangeri...erm...luminous green shirt.
Joey Barton bundled his way through a poor defence only to see his shot totally telegraphed by Gilks, who made a difficult stop look a piece of cake.
Peter Lovenkrands was brought on along with Hatem Ben Arfa and in all honesty, the impetus was with the home team with extra direct pace. The former saw a shot smartly saved by Gilks again.
More shots were blocked, with Nolan and Routledge both going close but the spirit and togetherness that Ollie`s team showed throughout was testament to the club in general and it could be seen what the win meant to the players. The goals were dedicated to Gary Parkinson who is seriously ill after suffering a stroke earlier in the week, and our thoughts go out to his family and we wish Parky a full recovery.
The best stop was saved until last when Carroll found himself free about 10 yards from goal and let fly which looked to have sent Gilks the wrong way but the keeper was equal to it, manoeuvring his left foot to deflect the ball clear. It was from then on that it was clear the three points were Pool's.
It was from another United attack when the clincher came. Obviously the home time were flying forward, trying desperately to find an equaliser. But the ball broke (after another heroic block in the Pool area) to Charlie Adam who carried the ball at least 60 yards unchallenged before feeding DJ Campbell in on goal. The ball wasn't the best, but the striker regained composure to shift the ball half a yard before curling home a left footed shot past Steve Harper to send the Seasiders fourth.
It sets up a massive game at Chelsea next week - is it too early to call it a six pointer? If we have any desire to win the league, we need to be beating teams like the Blues!
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Date:Sunday September 12 2010
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