Blackpool FC: Three talking points from the Seasiders' victory over Bristol Rovers- including praise for former Celtic wonderkid

Blackpool overcame Bristol Rovers in their final home game of 2023.Blackpool overcame Bristol Rovers in their final home game of 2023.
Blackpool overcame Bristol Rovers in their final home game of 2023.
Blackpool claimed a 3-1 victory over Bristol Rovers in their final home game of 2023.

Ollie Norburn struck a superb long-ranged effort to give the Neil Critchley’s side the lead in the 21st minute, before they were pegged back by John Marquis’ equaliser.

Jake Beesley edged Blackpool back in front in the early stages of the second half, before Jordan Rhodes secured the three points in the latter stages.

Here’s some of the talking points from the game:

What a hit

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Blackpool took the lead through a fantastic goal from Norburn. The ball sat perfectly for the midfielder to release a powerful effort from distance, just moments after Jordan Rhodes had seen one cleared off the line.

The club captain looked closer to the standards he set earlier in the season before his frustrating month on the sidelines.

After being pegged back, the Seasiders reacted in the right way at the beginning of the second half, with Beesley finishing past Matt Cox.

The win was rounded off by Rhodes, in what proved to be a contrasting display to the 2-1 defeat to Cambridge United last week.

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Dembele shows his class

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Karamoko Dembele continues to show his class for the Seasiders, and is probably the club’s second most important player- behind Jordan Rhodes.

Inside the opening five minutes, his fantastic footwork opened up two chances for him, with one hit straight at the keeper and the other deflected wide of the target. Meanwhile, he also had a later shot that struck the crossbar.

The attacker’s fantastic scoop pass over the top opened up the opportunity for Rhodes to put the Seasiders ahead- and there were plenty of other moments like that as well- including the assist for Beesley’s goal.

Dougall remains absent

Kenny Dougall was once again not involved for the Seasiders, after previously missing the games against Cambridge United and Forest Green Rovers.

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Prior to his recent absence the midfielder had been in fantastic form and was one of Blackpool’s standout players.

The latest update from Critchley revealed he has not featured due to a personal matter.

Hopefully we will see him back in action at some point over the Christmas period.