Blackpool high flyer Vassell vows to stay grounded

Kyle Vassell
Kyle Vassell

Blackpool striker Kyle Vassell is not getting carried away despite the Seasiders’ seven-match unbeaten run.

After losing at Bradford City on the opening day of the season, Gary Bowyer’s players have since posted five wins and two draws in League One.

It’s a run which has lifted them to fourth place in the table, and Vassell netted his second and third goals of the campaign in Saturday’s 3-1 home win over Oxford United.

However, despite their promising opening, Vassell says nobody will be getting ahead of themselves ahead of this weekend’s trip to Bristol Rovers, an attitude which stems from manager Gary Bowyer.

“The only target is to win the next game,” Vassell said.

“The gaffer is keeping us on the ground, keeping our heads level, because I don’t think anyone expected us to be here.

“We’re just focusing on Bristol this Saturday.”

Having opened the scoring with a fierce 20-yard effort which went in off the upright, Vassell wrapped up three points with a stoppage-time free-kick from a similar distance.

He could have scored more, with one header off target and another effort turned behind by U’s keeper Simon Eastwood.

That was the story of the game from a home perspective as Bowyer’s players could have been out of sight by half-time after to Vassell’s opener and Callum Cooke’s strike.

More chances were spurned in the second half before James Henry pulled one back for Oxford with time running out.

However, Vassell settled matters in added time with a free-kick which arrowed past Eastwood.

The striker admitted it was a set-piece where he won an argument with skipper Jimmy Ryan over who would actually take it.

He said: “I’m buzzing with the win and on a personal note to get two goals was great.

“For the first one, I just tried to put (Curtis) Nelson under some pressure and the ball broke free.

“With the free-kick, myself and Jimmy had a debate over what was on and what wasn’t.

“I said there was a straight line to goal and that I was having it.

“Jimmy hit one last week and the keeper made a great save. If I hadn’t hit the target, then I wouldn’t have been picking up the ball for a couple of weeks!”

Saturday’s win made it four victories from four in the league so far.

That is a run which extends to seven straight successes if the end of last season is also taken into account and something Vassell is keen to develop further.

“We had a spell last season when we were unbeaten at home for a long time and I think that’s the reason we got promoted last season,” Vassell said.

“If we can keep getting results at home then it can go well for us this year.”