Report: Newport 1 Blackpool 3
Blackpool set out a marker in their charge for a play-off place by grinding out a thoroughly deserved victory away at Newport County.
Bright Osayi-Samuel claimed the headlines with two strikes, while the winger also earned a penalty, converted by Mark Cullen.
The youngster’s first set them on the way and Cullen’s second spot kick of the week appeared to make the game safe, before the Newport reaction.
The hosts, fighting to stay in the EFL pulled one back through Alex Samuel and forced two brilliant saves from Dean Lyness, before Osayi-Samuel broke to seal the win in brilliant circumstances.
The victory extended Pool’s unbeaten run to eight matches in League Two and moved them to within a point of the play-offs.
A scrappy start to proceedings was inevitable at Rodney Parade, with Lyness saving well from Ryan Bird, unaware the referee had pulled up play for a foul on Tom Aldred.
Blackpool’s first opening of the afternoon fell to the in-form Cullen, who got too much contact on Colin Daniel’s brilliant cross, directing it well over the bar.
That was just the warning sign however, with the visitors taking the lead soon after. Neil Danns sent Osayi-Samuel on his way, the winger used typically nifty feet to work an opening and crashed an effort into the top corner, via the aid of a deflection.
24 minutes in Rigg found space in the Pool penalty area for the first time but got no power on his header, which dropped into the arms of Lyness.
As for Pool, they had Jordan Flores drag a shot wide, before Cullen curled a fine effort goal wards, only to watch it kiss the top of the bar and out for a goal kick.
The striker was keen to make his mark and came close soon after, opting to shoot across Joe Day, only for his strike to come back off the foot on the post.
In first-half injury time Bird curled harmlessly over the bar, as Pool went in for the break in front.
Half-Time: Newport 0 Blackpool 1
The second-half was an even scrappier affair, with neither side able to get a foot on the ball and create much in terms of chances.
Tom Owen-Evans thumped the first attempt of the half over the bar, before Blackpool doubled their lead.
After bagging the first one, Osayi-Samuel made the second, nipping in ahead of the defender and going down under the challenge, allowing Brett Huxtable to point the spot.
Cullen inevitably stepped up and produced a mirror image penalty to Tuesday night against Stevenage, sending the goalkeeper the wrong way and firing home.
Their comfortable lead short lived however, as Samuel got the wrong side of Aldred and squeezed an effort underneath Lyness, with the referee playing advantage rather than pointing to the spot.
It was backs against the walls from then on, with Newport firing balls into the box from all sorts of angles.
Gary Bowyer then rang the changes, with Ian Black and Jamille Matt replacing Cullen and Danns.
However, it was their goalkeeper catching the eye, with Lyness flying across to his near post to keep out a powerful strike from Rigg.
However, he was saving his best save until the 95th minute, going full stretch to tip over Samuel’s header – a remarkable piece of goalkeeping.
And Lyness was rewarded from the following corner as Blackpool broke through Osayi-Samuel, who chasing his own through ball and fired beyond Day to round off a hard-fought victory.
Full-Time: Newport 1 Blackpool 3