Blackpool v Doncaster Rovers AS IT HAPPENED: Updates from Bloomfield Road as Seasiders bid to book spot in League One play-offs

Blackpool take on Doncaster Rovers tonight in their penultimate game of the season needing just a point to guarantee a spot in the League One play-offs.

Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 4:30 pm
Updated Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 8:59 pm
Blackpool need just one point from their final two games to qualify for the play-offs
Blackpool need just one point from their final two games to qualify for the play-offs

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LIVE: Blackpool v Doncaster Rovers

Last updated: Tuesday, 04 May, 2021, 19:00

  • FT: Blackpool 2-0 Doncaster Rovers
  • Seasiders just need a point to guarantee their spot in the League One play-offs
  • Neil Critchley’s men hunting their third straight win

And welcome to tonight’s live blog, where we’ll bring you all the build-up, team news and action from Blackpool’s penultimate league game of the season against Doncaster Rovers.

Follow the blog for regular updates throughout the night.

Tonight could be the night Blackpool confirm their place in the League One play-offs.

Neil Critchley’s men need just one point from their final two games, but they’ll be hoping to get the job done tonight and avoid a nerve-jangling final day contest against Joey Barton and his already relegated Bristol Rovers side.

Pool come into tonight’s game in good form, having got back to winning ways following their back-to-back defeats with victories against both Sunderland and Northampton Town.

Doncaster, meanwhile, have nothing to play for in their final two games of the campaign having dropped away from the top six following Darren Moore’s departure at the start of March.

Kevin Stewart could still play some part for Blackpool despite missing Saturday’s 3-0 win against Northampton Town.

The midfielder (above) was a surprise absence having only just returned from an ankle injury, but Neil Critchley confirmed the 27-year-old was left out as a precaution and could feature tonight or on Sunday if required.

Elsewhere, Ethan Robson is likely to miss out after suffering what appeared to be a groin injury during the weekend’s win at Sixfields. Sullay Kaikai, who was taken out of the side at the last minute on Saturday after feeling his hamstring, could come back into contention.

Daniel Gretarsson, Matty Virtue, Grant Ward, CJ Hamilton and Gary Madine remain sidelined by injury, while Bez Lubala remains unavailable due to a ‘club matter’.

Neil Critchley’s pre-match comments

Neil Critchley.

“We’ve worked ever so hard to be in this position, so we won’t be taking the foot off the gas now.

“It’s a good result for us, a clean sheet, three goals, which helps the goal difference against a team who have been good at home and beat some top sides here.

“We have two home games to come and if we get the right results, momentum going into the play-offs is always important.”

Andy Butler’s pre-match comments

Doncaster's caretaker boss Andy Butler

“I want us to finish the season with some positive performances and some positive collective performances to show people we can still mix it with the best teams in the league because Blackpool and Peterborough are as tough as they come.

“We want to finish on a high and make some momentum for next season, make a feel-good factor. Everyone’s disappointed at not making the play-offs, and know all the fans, the staff and the players are. We’re frustrated.

“It’s disappointing not to be in the play-offs. I think with the squad we’ve got we’ve done well but there’s been a few performances where we have let ourselves down.

“(The last two matches) have been really good. There’s still things we can get better at but overall performance-wise I can’t really question the players.

“I was really pleased with the way we applied ourselves in the game against Rochdale. We made some really penetrating hard runs that really caused them problems.

“It’s a strange one when people believe there’s nothing to play for, If you look at the two neighbouring clubs, Sheffield Wednesday and Rotherham, they’ve got a barnstorming finish to the season.

“You want the season to finish with something to play for.

“The only thing we can play for now is the motivation and to put the performances in we missed out on earlier in the season.

“We can’t get into the play-offs but at the same time we’ve still got to use whatever motivates you as a person. There’s a lot of people out of contract and a lot of people who will return to loan clubs, so finish with a bang.”

Here’s the Donny side

Neil Critchley opts to make just one change from the weekend’s 3-0 win at Northampton Town, although it’s an enforced one.

Ethan Robson is the man to miss out after picking up what appeared to be a groin injury on Saturday.

Jordan Gabriel comes into the side to play at right wing-back, which pushes Ollie Turton into the centre of midfield alongside Kenny Dougall.

Sullay Kaikai misses out for the second game running after being taken out of the team at the last minute on Saturday, having felt his hamstring - a knock he suffered in last week’s win against Sunderland.

Kevin Stewart returns from his surprise absence on Saturday to take a spot on the bench, but Daniel Gretarsson, Matty Virtue, Grant Ward, CJ Hamilton and Gary Madine all remain sidelined.

Bez Lubala also remains unavailable due to a ‘club matter’.

Doncaster, who have nothing at stake in their final two games of the season, name an unchanged side from their weekend win at Rochdale.

Just getting on with it

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And kick-off is just moments away.

Can the Seasiders pick up the point they need to guarantee their spot in the League One play-offs? We’ll soon find out...

Up the mighty Pool!

After both sets of players take the knee, Doncaster’s Reece James gets the game underway.

Come on you Pool!!!

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