Kyle’s all smiles at Blackpool cup win

Blackpool celebrate Jarrett Rivers' opening goal
Blackpool celebrate Jarrett Rivers' opening goal
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Clark Robertson headed Blackpool into the third round of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and to their first cup victory in three years.

The Scot powered home a Jose Cubero free-kick after Jarrett Rivers had given the Seasiders a half-time lead at Port Vale with his first goal in senior football.

While boss Neil McDonald opted not to talk to the press after the 2-1 win, assistant Richie Kyle couldn’t speak highly enough of the display as Pool recorded a third successive victory.

“It was very pleasing,” Kyle said. “We needed to give some of our squad players a game and we are delighted how they responded.

“It was a great performance and a worthy victory, and more importantly it keeps our winning run going.

“Momentum is huge in football. The more you can win football matches the more confidence it breeds. For the whole squad it was a huge boost and we are all delighted.

“It was a real team display and they were excellent as a team. Everyone played his part.”

Leading at the break, Pool were soon pegged back in the second half when Anthony Grant fired home a penalty after defender Robertson fouled Enoch Andoh.

And it was the Seasiders’ response which pleased Kyle the most.

He said: “We bounced back from the penalty, got back on the front foot and showed a real positive attitude. It was great to see.”

Pool could have scored again had Kwame Thomas’ header early in the game been ruled to have crossed the goal-line before being cleared.

Kyle, along with Blackpool’s whole bench, was less than impressed. “It was in. It was over the line,” said McDonald’s number two.

“From where I was sitting I thought it was in, and when we watched it back after the game it looked in on the video.

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“That’s disappointing as you hope the officials get those decisions right.

“Luckily it didn’t make a difference but I thought it was a clear goal.”

Kyle defended the Seasiders’ decision to make eight changes to their starting line-up, despite a competition rule limiting them to six.

But the Liverpudlian insisted there was simply no alternative. Kyle explained: “It was a needs must job. Our squad was thin with injuries.

“It wasn’t disrespectful to the competition. We had to make eight changes.

“We had a number of bumps and bruises. Luckily we got through it.”