Goals from Gary Madine and Jerry Yates fired Blackpool to a 3-0 victory over Eastbourne Borough in the FA Cup first round on Sunday afternoon.
Madine opened the scoring just before the hour mark with a well-taken finish, before scoring his and Blackpool’s second ten minutes later to give the visitors control. Jerry Yates then put the game beyond doubt late on, after finishing expertly from an acute angle.
Blackpool were searching for their third consecutive win in all competitions, after coming off the back of League One wins against Burton Albion and Wigan Athletic. Critchley made one change to the team who claimed three points at Bloomfield Road on Tuesday, with Ollie Turton returning to the team in place of Grant Ward.
Neil Critchley’s side started strongly and almost made the perfect start to their FA Cup campaign inside two minutes at Priory Lane. CJ Hamilton found space inside the area and pulled it back towards Sullay Kaikai, but the latter’s effort came back off the woodwork.
An eventful first half at Priory Lane saw chances fall to both sides. Hamilton, who caused problems for the opposition throughout, pulled the ball back into a dangerous area, only for the post to deny Blackpool again after Kaikai’s fierce effort.
Danny Bloor’s side then had a chance of their own to take the lead seconds later. Greg Luer found himself through on goal with only Chris Maxwell to beat, but the Blackpool captain stood firm to deny the forward from close range.
Eastbourne continued to be resolute in their efforts to stay in the contest. Kenny Dougall found space in the middle of the park and tried his luck from distance, but Franco Ravizzoli made a good save to deny the midfielder his first Blackpool goal.
The Seasiders continued to search for the opening goal and almost found it on the half hour mark. Gary Madine found space and unleashed an audacious effort from 30 yards that went just over the bar, before Jerry Yates’ fierce effort was well saved by Ravizzoli.
Half-time: Eastbourne Borough 0-0 Blackpool
Blackpool started the second half as they started the first at Priory Lane and came within inches of taking the lead straight from the restart. Kaikai’s effort was blocked into the path of Madine, but the latter dragged his effort narrowly wide.
The Seasiders' pressure eventually reaped it's rewards just before the hour mark. James Husband’s cross was met by Madine, before the forward controlled the ball and expertly finished past Ravizzoli to put Neil Critchley’s men in control.
Critchley’s side were searching for their second and came close to getting it on two occasions. Hamilton’s cross picked out Jerry Yates at the back post, but the forward’s goal bound effort was somehow denied by a last-ditch block. The resulting corner from Kaikai was met by a towering header by Madine, but the goal-scorer was denied his second goal of the game by a block on the line by an Eastbourne defender.
The Seasiders eventually doubled their lead with 20 minutes to go. Yates found Madine in space after a swift interchange between the two strikers, before the latter composed himself and struck a low finish past Ravizzoli to give the visitors breathing room at Priory Lane.
Despite late pressure from the hosts, Blackpool made it three late on to put the game beyond doubt. Dan Kemp’s pass found Yates in-behind the Eastbourne defence, before the forward finished expertly from an acute angle to score his third goal in three games and confirm the Seasiders' place in the next round of the competition.
Full-time: Eastbourne Borough 0-3 Blackpool
Team: Maxwell, Gabriel, Ekpiteta, Grétarsson, Husband, Turton, Dougall (Ward, 85’), Hamilton (Kemp, 70’), Yates, Madine (Lubala, 83’), Kaikai
Subs: Sims, Mitchell, Antwi, Howe