Gary Bowyer says he is happy to accept a fine for the second time this season after making 10 changes to his side for Blackpool’s Checkatrade Trophy win at Doncaster.
A much-changed Pool 11 won 8-7 on penalties at the Keepmoat to dump their League Two rivals out of the competition and progress to the third round in the New Year.
The game finished 1-1 after 90 minutes, Doncaster striker Andy Williams cancelling out Armand Gnanduillet’s first-half opener.
Pool were fined £3,000 following their previous Trophy tie at Everton because Bowyer replaced goalkeeper Sam Slocombe with Myles Boney after only 11 minutes, having already made the maximum number of team changes allowed.
Winger Bright Osayi-Samuel was the only survivor from the Blackpool side that saw off Brackley Town in the FA Cup second round on Saturday, but Bowyer said it was a risk he was willing to take.
The manager said: “I have no problem getting fined for it this time because we’ve broken the rules.
“I’m quite happy with the fine that comes our way because we’ve made 10 changes, but we have now progressed into the next round and who are these people to say it’s a weakened team?”
Bowyer was full of praise for the fringe players and youngsters who were given a run-out, with striker Jack Redshaw making his first appearance of the season after injury and Henry Cameron also getting vital game-time.
Youth team striker Rowan Roache also came off the bench to make his first-team debut.
Bowyer added: “I thought we were terrific. We only had three lads from Saturday in training on Monday – the rest of them have knocks, injuries or a bit of tightness.
“So we made the changes and only had one session dealing with that shape, and I thought that in the first half especially we were really good.
“To come to a place like Doncaster, who are top of the table, and perform like we did in the first half was really good.”
After that impressive first period, Pool were forced to weather a storm in the second half as the home side came on strong. But the Seasiders held out to win through to the last 16, Luke Higham scoring the winning penalty.
Bowyer added: “Darren (Ferguson, Doncaster boss) made a couple of changes in the second half.
“He brought two of his regulars on and they came back into the game. But we had two goals disallowed for offside and they must have been really, really tight. We stuck at it and we won the tie on penalties.
“You saw at the end we had a 16-year-old on the bench (Roache), Henry Cameron, who hasn’t played all season (except for half an hour against Bolton in the EFL Cup), and Jack Redshaw making his first appearance of the season, so we’re pleased with the efforts of everyone.
“There are loads of positives for us before you even consider the result.”