Report: Blackpool 2 Blackburn 0
Michael Appleton recorded his first home win as Blackpool manager, as he saw his Seasiders side beat Blackburn Rovers 2-0.
Headers in either half from Wes Thomas and Kirk Broadfoot were enough to see Pool claim all three points, in front of a packed Bloomfield Road.
Blackburn had suffered only one defeat on the road so far this season, and settled quickly here, but there were few clear cut chances for either side in the early stages.
The first real scare for Blackpool came after 15 minutes, when Josh King won the ball from Craig Cathcart, and looked to set Colin Kazim-Richards clear through on goal. The Turkish international squared the ball back to his team-mate, but Cathcart recovered to slide in and clear the ball for a corner.
Appleton’s side then had to rely on the reactions of Matt Gilks to keep the score level, after Gael Givet’s clearance sent Jordan Rhodes clear. Gilks did well to palm out the former Huddersfield striker’s effort, then produced an even better save to deny Simon Vuckevic from long range.
Arguably against the run of play, Blackpool then took the lead. Nathan Delfouneso cut in from the left, and played in the perfect cross for Thomas to glance a header into the bottom corner of Jake Kean’s goal.
BLACKPOOL 1 BLACKBURN 0
Rovers continued to press after the goal, with Pool having to wait until the 40th minute to register their next shot on target. Tiago Gomes’s freekick in from the left almost caught out Kean, but the young stopper reacted quickly to palm the ball over for a corner.
Vuckevic then went within inches of equilising for Blackburn just on the stroke of half-time. After pouncing on a Cathcart clearance, the Montenegrin midfielder looked to have placed his shot perfectly, but the ball bounced off the upright and to safety.
HALF TIME: BLACKPOOL 1 BLACKBURN 0
After an uneventful start to the second half, Blackpool had the chance to double their lead through Thomas Ince. He latched onto a ball from Bob Harris, but his shot was well saved down to his right by Kean.
Henning Berg’s side continued to look threatening in attack, but failed to seriously test Gilks. A long ball forward towards King saw the goalkeeper racing off his line to clear, but a combination of the Scotsman and Alex Baptiste cleared the ball for a corner.
The Tangerines then made their first change of the afternoon, as Gary Taylor-Fletcher made his return from injury to replace the goalscorer Thomas.
Making a first appearance since September, Bob Harris looked determined to make his mark for Pool, and almost set up a breakaway after nicking the ball from a Blackburn defender. The Scottish full-back then played the ball inside to Tiago Gomes, who was brought down for a freekick.
Harris took charge of the dead-ball and fired in a left footed shot that Kean could only palm away for a corner. But Blackpool weren’t to be denied, as Kirk Broadfoot rose highest from the ball in to power a header home.
BLACKPOOL 2 BLACKBURN 0
Bloomfield Road was now in fine voice, and Alex Baptiste tried to add further gloss to the scoreline when he came inside from the right. The defender made the space for himself, but screwed his shot high and wide.
King almost got one back for his side when he got onto the end of a through ball from Ruben Rochina. The striker shot low and to Gilks’s left from 12 yards, but the Scottish stopper got down well to keep it out.
Scott Dann then almost added a bizarre third for Blackpool when he headed against his own post, as The Seasiders comfortably saw through a win which now takes them up to 11th in the Championship table.