Fans’ Panel: Taste of our own medicine

Blackpool's Tom Ince celebrates scoring with team-mate Roman Bednar during the game against Hull

Blackpool's Tom Ince celebrates scoring with team-mate Roman Bednar during the game against Hull

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Pool have had a happy habit of scoring late goals this season ... and against Hull on Friday they found out how it feels to be on the receiving end.

Our supporters’ panel reflect on the 1-1 draw after another week in which an off-field issue, rather than football, occupied fans’ thoughts...

PHIL CORBETT

Friday felt like a defeat and is definitely two points dropped as we dominated for much of the game before conceding so late on.

Of course, we have been doing that to teams all season long, so there had to be a time when we were on the other end.

For once, we came flying out of the traps and could easily have been a few goals to the good by half-time. That continued in the second half with the keeper making great saves, in particular one from Kevin Phillips. When all you have to show for such a dominant display is a fantastic finish from Ince, then there is always a danger that you will concede.

For once, I didn’t think the substitutions helped us, as we no longer won the longer balls once Bednar came off.

We seemed to sit deeper and deeper for the last 15 minutes and that simply invited Hull to press on and eventually nick an undeserved point.

However, play like that every week and it will result in far more wins than anything else.

In other news, I’m sure most fans wouldn’t begrudge the Oystons getting some return on their investment over the last decades, but to remove £11million when we still have antiquated training facilities is bad PR at the very least.

Man of match: Keith Southern

DAVE WHITE

Even for a perennial optimist like myself, in terms of points it is difficult to take Friday’s game as anything other than two dropped.

However, looking at the bigger picture we dominated the vast majority of the game against a decent side, scored a classy goal, and should have been much further ahead than we were at the time they managed to grab their equaliser.

It really isn’t nice when the boot is on the other foot! We’ve scored many a late goal this season to earn us points here and there, but this time we were the victims. You’d be hard pressed to say that Hull deserved it. They did have the better of the last 10 minutes or so – our substitutions seemed to have a negative effect on our momentum – but we never really looked in any immediate danger.

As for the first-half performance, it was one of the finest 45 minutes of football we’ve played all season, and Hull did well to keep us down to one goal.

Roman Bednar gave their defence plenty to think about and had probably his best game for us so far. Chance after chance came, but only one went in and it was a brilliant move from one end of the pitch to the other and finished expertly by Tom Ince.

All the while, our clear man of the match was scurrying in midfield, breaking up their attacks, winning the ball back and generally summing up everything that has made Blackpool FC what it has been over the last few years. Welcome back Keith Southern.

And so we go on to another big week. Two away games bring a tough test of our credentials. We are approaching the end game now – every point is vital so let’s hope we bring some back from Derby and Peterborough.

Man of match: Keith Southern

PETER GILLATT

To be the first side in seven games to score against City it had to be a special goal, and Tom Ince’s effort with the help of Kevin Phillips was stunning and it rounded off a wonderful half in which Pool never let Hull settle. I wasn’t initially struck by the starting 11, as I believe Brett Ormerod and Kevin Phillips are far more potent for Pool coming on as late subs. However, the performance of Ormerod was exceptional and after a superb game at Ashton Gate, he again gave 100 per cent but the limelight shone on Keith Southern who was utterly fearless all night, backed by a terrific atmosphere in the stadium.

Only Vito Mannone’s exceptional saves in goal for City kept Tom Ince and the Kevin Phillips from adding to the Seasiders score.

The Tigers hardly had a shot at Gilks all night, so it hurt even more when the one defensive lapse would eventually cost Pool two valuable points in injury time.

As the game wore on and without Pool making a further breakthrough, there was a real need to change the play so we could try and hold the ball up front, and when the subs came on, they lacked the usual Holloway midas touch.

Once Bednar left, the side completely lost shape and gave Hull far too much space to play with the inevitable result.

With key players set to return and Pool not due back on that dreadful pitch for two weeks, there’s a chance to pick up points on the road at Derby and Peterborough.

Man of match: Keith Southern

FIONA MARTIN

After a weekend of off-pitch revelations that have left fans with far more questions than they have answers, Friday night’s football seems a long time ago.

We were magnificent for 70 minutes of that game. Absolutely class, from front to back. The back four were excellent, led superbly by Alex Baptiste. The outstanding Keith Southern and Barry Ferguson ran the midfield, and the front four caused Hull all sorts of problems. Bednar looked fitter and sharper, and for me it was one of Kevin Phillips’ best all-round performances in a Blackpool shirt.

Then, Bednar was absolutely exhausted, Ferguson was carrying a knock and Ollie was rather forced into a substitution. It was the right change at the time, but it just didn’t work. Then, it rather became a case of attempting damage control. Not our biggest strength. We’ve come from behind that many times, you do wonder if we’re lacking in the experience of controlling a game.

Sadly, some poor marking (only the players will know who was meant to be tracking McKenna on the edge of the box) led to a late equaliser. Suddenly we were the victims.

There’s a lot of football to be played over the next two months, and we need more performances like the first 70 minutes, but you can’t say we’re not good value for our current position. Every game at the moment feels massive, and no club can afford to slip up.

The quality and spirit in the team and the squad has never been in question, but we’ve got a big couple of months coming up. Now is the time to be focusing on what happens on the pitch, and pulling together as a club and supporters – and having an influence on those things we can control.

The future remains bright.

Man of match: Keith Southern

MICHAEL MORRISON

So, that’s how it feels! After several late comebacks recently, it’s about time that we had a taste of our own medicine.

Ollie’s tactics also leave me with a dilemma. I always drone on about what might have been if we had tried to see games out by adopting a defensive approach, and now I know. Even after changing to five at the back, we still conceded.

Does this mean that it’s best to keep on attacking until the final whistle and that I’ve been wrong the whole time? Maybe, though I think it has to go down as an overall lack of quality at the back. So maybe it is best to use our attack as our best form of defence.

Tom Ince was great going forward, and his performance was over shadowed by that of just one man: Keith Southern. When he made his initial comeback a month or two ago, I said that he shouldn’t have played; that he wasn’t fit and for the sake of a romantic return we had lost a match.

On Friday night though, he was on top of his game and showed the quality he can offer. His energetic, hungry displays would not be copied by a striker that I really hope we don’t sign, however.

Robbie Fowler is one of the greatest strikers to have graced the green grass of the Premier League, but he’s a relic now. Some players can go on for years, as Phillips has shown, but some can’t, as Fowler showed at Cardiff some years ago. It would be a huge mistake.

Man of match: Keith Southern