Blackpool boss swallows bitter pill

Blackpool boss Gary Bowyer says his players have to 'take their medicine' and move on after losing at home for only the second time this season.

Monday, 19th December 2016, 6:00 am
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 3:11 pm
Kyle Vassell shoots but Pool fired blanks against Luton

The Seasiders succumbed to a disappointing 2-0 defeat at the hands of an impressive Luton Town side and dropped out of the League Two play-off zone, while the Hatters remain fifth.

Leaders Plymouth Argyle inflicted Pool’s only other defeat at Bloomfield Road in August and Bowyer’s men had won five in a row at home before Luton’s visit.

Bowyer accepted it was a bad day at the office but refused to dwell on his side’s below-par performance.

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He said: “Overall it was disappointing but we’ve got to take our medicine and go again, starting on Boxing Day at Hartlepool.

“It’s been a good run at home but we’ve got to start again now and hopefully go even further.

“The first goal was crucial. The saves from Danny Pugh and Kyle Vassell were very good from the lad (Luton keeper Christian Walton). I wasn’t too sure how he saved the second one from Vass.

“But we haven’t met the standards we’re capable of, so we have to recover.”

The sides appeared evenly matched in the opening period but the visitors led at half-time courtesy of Jack Marriott’s goal after half an hour.

Jack Payne’s crossfield ball appeared to be blocked by a Luton arm seconds earlier but they took full advantage as play continued.

There was no questioning their second, though, as Cameron McGeehan was allowed the freedom of the Blackpool box to head in at the back post three minutes into the second half.

Bowyer added: “There was a handball in the build-up to their first goal, which was a big decision, and the first goal in this type of game was always going to be important.

“In the second half I don’t think we showed the capabilities we’ve shown at home all season. I suppose you could say my half-time team-talk didn’t work.

“You look at the defending (for the second goal) and it’s poor. We had many opportunities to clear it.”

Asked if too many of his players were out of sorts, he replied: “Yeah, I’d agree with that. To be fair to the lads, though, that’s the first time this season we’ve really said that.

“That’s probably been our worst performance, second half particularly. If you look at marks out of 10 for the players, we haven’t had enough sixes and sevens.”