McDonald rues Pool’s misfiring strikers

Mark Cullen missed Pool's best chance
Mark Cullen missed Pool's best chance
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Neil McDonald pointed the finger at his misfiring strikers after Blackpool fell to their sixth defeat on the bounce.

The Seasiders squandered key chances at Southend before Adam Thompson’s 76th-minute header left Pool second-bottom of League One.

While still less than convincing, Pool’s display was much-improved on the horror show against Doncaster a week earlier.

But manager McDonald says a lack of cutting edge in front of goal saw them lose a game he feels they should have won.

The Pool boss said: “I would have been disappointed with a draw really. I thought we created lots of chances.

“Our attacking play cost us the game. It’s another defeat and it’s hugely disappointing.

“I’ve criticised the players in the past and been frustrated, but I was much more pleased (with this performance). I really thought we could have taken something from the game.”

McDonald pointed to a key moment just before half-time, when striker Mark Cullen missed a golden chance to put Pool ahead.

He was teed-up 10 yards out by substitute Kwame Thomas but miskicked his shot wide.

“Mark has to hit the target at least,” said McDonald. “That’s why we are disappointed.

“We are creating chances but not scoring enough goals and that’s the biggest disappointment.

“We have to take our chances when they come along and Mark was distraught in the changing room.

“When you are struggling like we are and those chances come along, you have to put them in the net. If we are playing well and winning, those chances fly in.”

McDonald had his players in for training yesterday, having only completed the long journey back from Essex just before midnight.

While he was pleased his side looked more secure in defence, the manager was less than impressed with the winning goal.

“We defended on a high line and they didn’t create many chances,” he added.

“I think we contained them quite well, but one ball into the box and a free header is really disappointing.

“When they scored we were on the counterattack and gave the ball away really cheaply. They came down the other end, crossed and had a free header in the box.

“I wish we could have a free header in the box. When we did have a header in the box we hit the crossbar.

“We had some really good chances and we were punished for not taking them.

“I thought the performance was much much better than last week. In defence we looked much more solid but again we came away with nothing.

“We have to make sure we make it easy for ourselves by defending well and taking chances when they come.”