Match report: Sandbach 1 AFC Blackpool 4

Sandbach v AFC Blackpool
Sandbach v AFC Blackpool

Blackpool  recorded an emphatic win over top-six Sandbach, who had won their previous three Hallmark Security League first division games, including a 7-1 demolition of Bacup.

Sandbach United 1 AFC Blackpool 4

Blackpool recorded an emphatic win over top-six Sandbach, who had won their previous three Hallmark Security League first division games, including a 7-1 demolition of Bacup.

AFC were bidding to build on their first home win of the season against Cammell Laird but had injured captain Marc Taylor among their missing regulars as newly signed defender Fran Donaghy was named on the bench.

Martin Baird assumed the captaincy as AFC started on the front foot and it was no surprise when they took the lead on 11 minutes, left-back Stephen Betteridge's excellent cross turned in by Alex Taylor.

The home side hit back as Callum Kirkland saved from Josh Lane and AFC lost their shape somewhat. The equaliser arrived six minutes from half-time, when Ryan Eiselt scored from a corner.

It took a superb one-handed save by Kirkland to deny the hosts a half-time lead, while at the other end Kit Gregory shot wide.

Stuart Tulloch hit the bar for Sandbach on 54 minutes but Blackpool were back in front three minutes later, Conah Bishop slotting home one-on-one with keeper Ryan Moss.

Blackpool introduced Carnan Dawson and Ben Duffield and the latter made it 3-1 with a penalty on 73 minutes.

Sandbach kept pushing forward but the AFC defence held firm and Gregory made it four in the second minute of injury time.

This great team performance against last season's play-off contenders and First Division Cup winners lifted AFC into the top 10, though it gets even tougher on Tuesday away to unbeaten leaders Silsden.

Admission will be free for Saturday's home game against Abbey Hulton on Non-League Day, when a collection will be made for NLD charity Prostate Cancer UK.

NEIL CARNAN

Blackpool: Kirkland, Nay, Betteridge, Caunce, Baird, Mottram, McKenna, Hargreaves, Taylor, Bishop, Gregory; subs; Duffield, Dawason, Donaghy, Speight.