Report: Blackpool 2 Shrewsbury 3
Blackpool were dragged back into the relegation battle after failing to recover from a disastrous first-half and falling to defeat at home to Shrewsbury Town.
The Seasiders put in an uncharacteristic defensive performance, with The Shrews racing into a three—goal lead thanks to Nathaniel Knight-Percival, Shaun Whalley and Andy Mangan.
To their credit, the hosts made a fight of it but after Tom Aldred and Danny Philliskirk struck, they couldn’t force a dramatic equaliser.
Philliskirk had an effort cleared off the line but that’s as close as they came, as the mountain was too high to climb.
Blackpool’s impressive form was quickly forgotten within the opening ten minutes, as Shrewsbury raced into a two-goal lead. The hosts had barely got out of their own half when they found themselves behind, as Knight-Percival’s fine overhead kick looped out of Lyness’ reach.
The dust had barely settled before The Shrews made it two. A disastrous mistake at the back saw Aldred and David Ferguson collide, and Whalley capitalised by firing beyond Lyness and Will Aimson, who failed to clear off the line.
Shrewsbury were causing all kinds of problems to Pool’s defence and Mangan fired the next effort narrowly wide. However, the striker wouldn’t be denied and slammed home the third on the half-hour mark after good industry from Whalley.
Six minutes later Pool had a lifeline as Jim McAlister, fresh off the bench, swung in a free-kick which the visitors didn’t deal with, allowing Aldred to turn and pick out the top corner.
McAlister was in the thick of action after coming on and his deft header was turned onto the post by Jayson Leutwiler. At the other end Whalley flashed an effort wide as The Shrews went in for the break with a comfortable lead.
Half-Time: Blackpool 1 Shrewsbury 3
With Neil McDonald’s words still ringing in his players’ ears, Pool started the second-half well. First Philliskirk’s smashed effort was beaten away, before Zak Whitbread threw his body in the way of Brad Potts’ shot.
Minutes later it truly was game on as Pool registered their second. After great work from McAlister, Philliskirk went past Whitbread and took his shot early, perhaps catching Leutwiler by surprise, as it nestled in the bottom corner.
The Shrews were attempting to take the sting out of the game and Uche Ikpeazu’s introduction did little to ignite Blackpool. Instead it was left to Lyness to keep Pool in it, flying through the air to deny Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro.
Leutwiler wasn’t to be outdone however, turning Potts’ effort over the bar, before Philliskirk was denied by both Junior Brown and Leutwiler in quick succession.
The final Blackpool change saw Martin Paterson replace Jack Redshaw for his first appearance since December. Soon after Ikpeazu’s header dropped into the arms of Leutwiler as the hosts continued to press for a dramatic equaliser.
It wouldn’t arrive however, as Pool fell to a rare home defeat and slipped closer to the bottom four.
Full-Time: Blackpool 2 Shrewsbury 3