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Match Reports

Report: Blackpool 1 Portsmouth 1

Gnanduillet Leveller Maintains Unbeaten Start

31 August 2019

Armand Gnanduillet nodded in a second-half equaliser to maintain Blackpool’s unbeaten start to the season in a 1-1 draw with Portsmouth.

The Frenchman scored his fifth goal of the season just prior to the hour mark to spark an improved display after the break and cancel out the game’s opener from Marcus Harness.

Manager Simon Grayson made just the one change to his side for the game, handing a first league start to striker Joe Nuttall.

It was a lively start from the Seasiders who went straight on the attack and caused the visitors a few problems. A great run through the middle from Sullay Kaikai deserved more, yet he was unable to pick out Nuttall.

Despite the positive opening to the game, Blackpool soon found themselves behind. Curtis Tilt made an uncharacteristic error in possession and the ball eventually broke to Marcus Harness, who made no mistake with the finish.

That advantage almost doubled for Kenny Jackett’s side when John Marquis made a strong run and looked to pick out the top corner. Fortunately, Jak Alnwick got a vital touch on the ball to deny him.

Suddenly, Pool were looking off-key and unable to retain possession, seeing attempted moves break down in the middle of the park.

The opposition continued to press Blackpool and force mistakes, but they were dealt a blow when goalscorer Marcus Harness was forced off with an injury. Gareth Evans was his replacement.

Half-Time: Blackpool 0 Portsmouth 1

The Seasiders continued to find it difficult to build up momentum immediately after the interval, though a well-timed challenge from Christian Burgess did prevent Armand Gnanduillet from finding the target from close range.

The Frenchman wasn’t to be denied minutes later though, as he brought Blackpool level. Liam Feeney swung a delightful cross in from the right and Gnanduillet was there to head the ball in the back of the net.

The goal put new life into the side and put the visitors on the back foot. Cross after cross went into the Portsmouth box and that man Gnanduillet almost scored his and Blackpool’s second, glancing just wide with another header.

At the other end, Jak Alnwick pulled off a big save to stop John Marquis from putting Kenny Jackett’s side back in front.

The visitors were now set up to counter-attack and did just that with eight minutes left on the clock. Ronan Curtis was put through down the left but fizzed his shot wide of the far post.  

Both sides pushed for a late winner but eventually had to settle for a point apiece.

Full-Time: Blackpool 1 Portsmouth 1

Team: Alnwick, Turton, Edwards, Tilt, Husband, Spearing (Guy 80), Thompson, Feeney, Kaikai (Virtue 85), Nuttall, Gnanduillet

Subs: Mafoumbi, Bushiri, Heneghan, Guy, Virtue, Shaw, Hardie

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