Reaction To The Brighton Draw
Blackpool's captain for the day Matt Gilks admitted that the underdogs tag worked in Pool’s favour this afternoon, as they boosted their survival chances with a hard-earned point at Brighton.
The Seasiders’ hosts are chasing a play-off spot, but they were matched all the way by their dogged opponents, as Pool stayed in the relegation zone on goal difference alone.
A fine strike from Stephen Dobbie will rightly take the headlines, but just as vital was their solidity of Blackpool’s back five, who ensured the points would be shared.
“It’s a very big point, people had probably written us off coming down here against a fantastic team, but I think those who travelled down will be proud of what we did today,” said Gilks.
“The last game we were very unlucky, it was a dogged performance and we were unfortunate to not come out with at least a point, so today made up for that.
“The general consensus at the minute is that we’re on a slide. Today, from me to the strikers and the subs that came on, everyone put a shift in and showed we’re not going down without a fight.”
Unlike on Friday, Gilks had just four defenders ahead of him this afternoon, but Pool’s goalkeeper was full of praise for his reshuffled backline.
Andy Halliday slotted in at left-back, while teenager Harrison McGahey made his first Blackpool appearance away from home, as Pool held firm.
“I’m quite vocal at the back and Tony is. Cathers is growing every game, having a youngster next to him makes him more confident, because he helps him out,” the 31-year-old said.
“Harrison has been superb, he probably needed the step up at this moment in time. Playing with the pros and getting used to the game, he has been exactly what we needed.
“Andy Halliday has come in and done fantastic for the injured Jack Robinson. We reshuffled, put up a bit of a wall and limited them to few chances.”
And Blackpool’s defensive unit would have been celebrating a clean sheet this evening, had it not been for a bit of individual brilliance from Dale Stephens, much like Michael Kightly on Friday.
“When they’re going in like that you have to hold your hands up and say good goal. The past few months we’ve conceded sloppy goals and they’re the disappointing ones. But they were two great goals today, Dobbs’ was fantastic,” said Gilks.