MATCH REPORT: Peterborough 0-1 Blackpool

Vassell marked his return from injury with a goal
Vassell marked his return from injury with a goal

Kyle Vassell marked his return from injury with a match-winning goal as Blackpool got back to winning ways with a 1-0 victory against Peterborough.

The striker, who had missed the previous four games with a hamstring injury, struck the decisive blow early in the first half.

Both sides traded plenty of chances in what was an action-packed affair but it was to be the Seasiders who took home the points to put their three straight defeats behind them.

The Seasiders made a blistering start to the game and almost had the lead inside 50 seconds.

Will Aimson was left unmarked at the back post and he sent his looping header beyond goalkeeper Conor O’Malley, only for Leo Da Silva to clear off the line for the home side.

Pool continued to dominate possession in the early stages, with the returning Kyle Vassell pressing from the front backed up by Colin Daniel - who was deployed in his more natural position of left wing.

The home side grew into the game as the half wore on and came close to breaking the deadlock through the dangerous Jack Marriott, but Pool ‘keeper Ryan Allsop was equal to his close-range shot.

But it was to be Gary Bowyer’s men who took the lead on the 20-minute mark, and it was that man Vassell who marked his return with a goal.

The striker was played in behind the Posh defence thanks to a smart ball from Sean Longstaff and he sent the ball looping over the onrushing ‘keeper via a small deflection.

The hosts started to see more of the ball after the goal but the Seasiders were only too happy to sit back and hit them on the break - which they did time and time again only to lack that final killer ball.

Posh went close with a couple of opportunities within the space of three minutes. The first came via the boot of Marriott but he drilled narrowly wide, before Allsop produced a superb fingertip save to keep out Michael Doughty’s curling effort.

The Seasiders then went close to adding a second on the break but Solomon-Otabor’s desperate stretch wasn’t enough to get on the end of Daniel’s dangerous whipped-in cross with the goal at his mercy.

Pool kept up the pressure towards the end of the first half and Longstaff and Vassell combined to create an opening inside the Peterborough box, but a defender recovered well to clear.

Will Aimson then got on the end of the subsequent corner but could only send his header narrowly wide.

Marriott should have got his side back on level terms just before the break but he took too long over his shot and his eventual effort was well blocked by Allsop.

But Pool ended the half the stronger, with Vassell seeing his shot blocked by former Newcastle United man Steven Taylor before Longstaff brought out a good save out of O’Malley with a dipping volley.

The Seasiders started the second period just as they did the first - on the front foot and creating an opening within minutes. This time it came through Viv Solomon-Otabor who burst into the box only to see O’Malley save his effort down to his left.

But Blackpool needed a bit of luck to survive a scare at the other end of the pitch, with no Peterborough player able to get on the end of Leo Da Silva’s dangerous ball across the six-yard box.

A couple of minutes later substitute Gwion Edwards squandered a priceless chance to draw the hosts level. It came after Marcus Maddison had beaten Ollie Turton too easily and he hung up a cross to Edwards at the back post, but he could only direct his header over Allsop’s bar.

A quiet spell ensued as Blackpool took the necessary steps to slow the game down and frustrate Grant McCann’s side.

With just over ten minutes left on the clock, Longstaff went agonisingly close to adding a second goal that would have surely put the game to bed. The midfielder bore down on the Peterborough box and tried his luck with a dipping effort from the edge of the box that missed the goal by a matter of inches, with the ‘keeper left stranded.

But it wasn’t to matter as it proved to be the last action of the game, as the Seasiders held on for their first league win since the 2-1 win against Bury last month.

Peterborough: O'Malley, Hughes, Taylor, Tafazolli, Baldwin (Edwards), Doughty (Anderson), Da Silva Lopes, Grant, Lloyd (Kanu), Maddison, Marriott

Subs not used: Bond, Forrester, Penny, Chettle

Blackpool: Allsop, Turton, Aimson, Tilt, Daniel, Spearing, Longstaff (D'Almeida), Cooke, Mellor, Solomon-Otabor (Delfounes), Vassell (Gnanduillet)

Subs not used: Williams, Taylor, Philliskirk, Menga

Referee: Trevor Kettle

Attendance: 5,254 (278 Blackpool)