Report: Blackpool 2 Crewe 0
Blackpool hauled themselves out of the League One relegation zone after a comprehensive second-half performance against Crewe Alexandra wielded three vital points.
The result was a reward for patience, as Blackpool were continually kept out by the league’s bottom side, before Hayden White rifled home his first goal for the club 65 minutes in.
And the result was sealed late on with a carbon copy of Tuesday night’s incident, as David Norris was clattered inside the penalty area and Jack Redshaw tucked away the spot kick.
The result made it six unbeaten for The Seasiders and continued to guide them up the table.
In changeable conditions Blackpool settled quickly, in what was their second home game of the week, and Mark Cullen forced Ben Garratt into a routine save, while Brad Inman fizzed a strike wide of the Pool goal.
While nothing too strenuous, Garratt was being kept busy with routine saves to deny the returning Bright Osayi-Samuel and David Norris. At the other end former Seasider David Fox attempted to fine-tune his radar but after shooting wide, was denied by a firm Colin Doyle save.
22 minutes in the hosts had the ball in the back of the net, but Cullen suffered the sinking feeling as he glanced towards the linesman, who had the flag raised. Jim McAlister’s volley on the turn was palmed away by Garratt, but when Cullen hit home the rebound he was beyond the last defender.
Blackpool continued to push for the opener, but were finding Crewe’s hostile back five too hard to break down, as Garratt took two bites of the cherry to claim Cullen’s effort.
Cullen was continuing to link up well with strike partner Redshaw, but when the latter latched onto the former’s pass and fired home the flag was again raised to keep the sides level at the break.
Half-Time: Blackpool 0 Crewe 0
A tepid opening ten minutes to the second-half were finally lifted by Blackpool when David Ferguson found acres of space down the left, and his drilled cross was hooked goalwards by McAlister, but Garratt produced a brilliant save to deny the Scot.
Next it was Redshaw who was left wanting in front of goal. On the counter attack from a Crewe corner, Brad Potts slipped in the former Morecambe man, but his delay allowed the Alex defence to get back and throw bodies at his effort.
However they wouldn’t be denied and the opening goal came from an unlikely source. Tom Aldred’s clipped cross evaded everyone inside the Crewe box, which allowed White to steam in at the back post and fire into the roof of the net.
Not happy with one, Blackpool were instantly on the front foot, and Redshaw missed a golden chance to make it two, lifting over from close range when under pressure from the Crewe defence.
Neil McDonald then added fresh legs to his side by bringing Emmerson Boyce and Jarrett Rivers off the bench in place of White and Osayi-Samuel.
Their opponents had looked lost for ideas since falling behind and Pool’s Aldred threw his body on the line to keep out an effort from substitute Callum Saunders.
Pool’s lead had never looked in threat and the sealer finally arrived three minutes from time. Norris pounced on a loose ball quicker than Chris Atkinson, who took out the midfielder, giving the referee no option but to point to the spot.
For the second time this week Redshaw was coolness personified from the spot, sending Garratt the wrong way to put the seal on victory for Pool.
In injury time substitute Kwame Thomas, who'd replaced Cullen, could have added a third but it mattered not, as The Seasiders lifted themselves out of the bottom four for the first time since August.
Full-Time: Blackpool 2 Crewe 0