How the League One play-off picture looks after Blackpool's win at Sunderland and late drama involving Portsmouth and Charlton

Neil Critchley admits it’s too soon to know the prognosis of the knocks Grant Ward and Sullay Kaikai suffered during Blackpool’s 1-0 win against Sunderland last night.

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 9:49 am
Updated Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 10:16 am

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Sunderland 0-1 Blackpool: Sullay Kaikai's thunderbolt caps off perfect night for...

The Seasiders got back to winning ways after suffering back-to-back defeats by claiming a magnificent 1-0 win against fourth-placed Sunderland.

The win, handed to them by Sullay Kaikai’s magnificent long-range strike, completed a first league double over the Black Cats in 63 years.

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It saw Neil Critchley’s side move up to fifth, where they now sit three points ahead of seventh-placed Oxford United with a game in hand still to play.

With just three games remaining, Blackpool now know they will be guaranteed a top-six finish if they pick up five points from their fixtures against Northampton Town, Doncaster Rovers and Bristol Rovers.

Heading into stoppage-time, with Pool desperately holding on, things remained very much up in the air with both Charlton Athletic and Portsmouth winning.

But Crewe Alexandra snatched a dramatic 96th-minute equaliser to draw 2-2 with Charlton, while Accrington Stanley hit back in the 95th-minute thanks to a John Marquis own goal to draw 3-3 with Portsmouth.

Chief executive Ben Mansford and director Brett Garrity applaud the players off the pitch at the Stadium of Light

Crewe’s late leveller, meanwhile, came from Owen Dale, a player Critchley coached during his time working at Gresty Road. It was also the 22-year-old’s second of the game.

Sunderland, who are now winless in their last seven, still have work to do to ensure their play-off spot despite being in the hunt for automatic promotion only a few weeks ago.

Lee Johnson’s side are five points clear of Oxford and six points ahead of Charlton in eighth, but the Addicks have a game in hand.

Lincoln City, meanwhile, just need one more point to be assured of a play-off finish, although they still have an outside chance of catching Peterborough United in second.

The Posh, who were held to a 2-2 draw against Doncaster last night, remain eight points clear but the Imps have a game in hand to play and they face Peterborough on Saturday.

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