Charlton Athletic 0-0 Blackpool: Injury-plagued Seasiders extend unbeaten run at The Valley

Nya Kirby made his first start in a Blackpool shirt
Nya Kirby made his first start in a Blackpool shirt
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Blackpool defied their ever-growing injury list to pick up an impressive point away at Charlton Athletic to stretch their unbeaten run to seven games.

A brave rearguard defensive display saw the Seasiders claim their 16th clean sheet in League One this season and 18 in all competitions.

Chris Long was the latest to hobble off injured in today’s stalemate, making it nine players who are currently available for Terry McPhillips’ injury-plagued side.

But it was Pool who had the best chance of the game, Armand Gnanduillet unable to repeat his midweek exploits at the Stadium of Light by missing a gilt-edged opportunity with just eight minutes left on the clock.

But the draw extends Pool’s unbeaten run and leaves them in eighth place in League One in what could have been Owen Oyston’s final game in charge of the club.

Nya Kirby was handed his first start as Terry McPhillips made four changes to the side that drew 1-1 at Sunderland in midweek.

The 19-year-old, on loan from Crystal Palace, has previously only made two appearances off the bench since signing last month.

He was brought into midfield to replace Jordan Thompson, who missed out through illness.

Donervon Daniels and Nick Anderton both returned from injuries to fill the full-back positions, while Chris Long came into the side in place of Nathan Delfouneso - who dropped to the bench.

Marc Bola and Matty Virtue also missed out with injuries picked up at the Stadium of Light.

Only six substitutes were named on the bench due to a club-developed player not being named in the squad, with Nathan Shaw in action for the youth team earlier in the day.

Thompson joins Myles Boney, Marc Bola, Callum Guy, Jimmy Ryan, Jay Spearing, Matty Virtue and Max Clayton on the absence list.

The Seasiders made a strong start to proceedings, playing some lovely one and two-touch football.

Antony Evans powered through the middle before looking to play in Kirby, only for the ball to ricochet to Chris Long who was ruled offside.

Charlton were cut apart on seven minutes, Long beating his marker on the byline before taking an age to pick out a teammate, eventually seeing his pullback evade everyone in the box.

Pool continued to make all the early running, Kirby volleying over the crossbar on the turn from Donervon Daniels’ deep cross.

Ollie Turton, back in midfield, did well to deflect Jonny Williams’ near-post attempt behind for a corner on 17 minutes as the Addicks threatened for the first time.

The home side slowly but surely grew into the game, Josh Parker producing an air shot from eight yards out after having the ball pulled back to him by Joe Aribo.

Jonny Williams then tested Mark Howard with a dipping 25-yard effort, but the Pool keeper did well to claim it down low to his left.

At the other end, Armand Gnanduillet produced a similar effort to the one he scored at Sunderland in midweek, albeit this time on his right foot, which Charlton keeper Dillon Phillips was only able to parry away.

Aribo continued to be a real threat down the left for the hosts, the winger again engineering some space for himself before pulling the back back to Williams whose low shot on the turn was saved by the legs of Howard.

The hosts were presented with a promising opportunity to get a shot off at goal on the stroke of half time, only for Ben Reeves to sky his 20-yard free kick well over into the bar and into the Blackpool fans behind the goal.

Charlton threatened an opener in the early stages of the second period, but Curtis Tilt produced a superb block to deny Josh Parker as space opened up for the forward.

Long was felled on the edge of the Charlton box, giving Antony Evans the chance to net his first goal for the club but his effort was blocked by the wall.

The on-loan Everton man then looked to get in behind but his pullback was easily claimed by Phillips in the Charlton goal.

Evans gave the ball away in a poor area of the pitch, giving Charlton a two-on-one situation down the right resulting in a mini goalmouth scramble which Blackpool just about managed to survive.

Pool were forced into a change just before the hour mark, Joe Dodoo coming on against his former club to replace Long, who had pulled up with what appeared to be a hamstring injury.

Chris Taylor was also brought into the fold in place of Evans.

The Addicks continued to ramp up the pressure in search of the first goal of the game, Anfernee Dijksteel flashing a dangerous ball across goal which Ben Purrington got a head to but couldn’t quite direct goalwards.

Blackpool had penalty appeals waved away when Tilt went sprawling in the Charlton box, but referee Kevin Johnson was having none of it.

Meanwhile, in defence, Tilt and Harry Pritchard produced a couple of brave blocks in quick succession as the Seasiders desperately looked to keep the Addicks at bay.

Pool remained a threat on the break on that’s what led to their chance nine minutes from time, substitute Nathan Delfouneso whipping in a teasing ball to the back post which was just too far ahead of Gnanduillet.

Those two combined for the game’s biggest chance a minute later, Delfouneso playing in Gnanduillet inside the Charlton box, the forward skipping a couple of challenges before lifting the ball over both the keeper and crossbar from close range.

TEAMS

Charlton: Phillips, Dijksteel, Bauer, Purrington, Aribo, Williams (Lapslie), Sarr, Cullen, Reeves (Marshall), Parker (Vetokele), Taylor

Subs not used: Maxwell, Solly, Pratley, Hackett-Fairchild

Blackpool: Howard, Daniels, Heneghan, Tilt, Anderton, Turton, Pritchard, Kirby (Delfouneso), Evans (Taylor), Long (Dodoo), Gnanduillet

Subs not used: Mafoumbi, Nottingham, Feeney

Referee: Kevin Johnson

Attendance: 17,267 (563 Blackpool)