Memory Match: Blackpool v Wimbledon, 1979

Tony Kellow was a clear man of the match
Tony Kellow was a clear man of the match
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Matt Scrafton trawls through the archives to look back at Blackpool's 3-0 win against Wimbledon on September 1, 1979.

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Leading goalscorer Derek Spence was absent through injury

Leading goalscorer Derek Spence was absent through injury

Many Blackpool fans would have bet against the side scoring six goals in two games with only one recognised striker – Tony Kellow – playing without the injured Derek Spence.

And Kellow scored only one of those goals. Brian Wilson has proven more than a capable deputy with two; midfielders Brian Smith, Bobby Kerr and Jimmy Weston have scored the other three.

If you add to that statistic, the goals from left back Terry Pashley and central defender Stan McEwan which beat Gillingham in the first match of the season, it is clear what Blackpool’s continued strategy has to be.

Get men up and pour them round the back and provide plenty of bodies in support when the ball comes across.

When space is tight in a packed penalty area, the holes have to be carved from deep and wide.

That was how Blackpool transformed a pedestrian first-half display into a confident victory romp against Wimbledon.

Tom McAlister made three excellent saves to keep Blackpool level when breezy Wimbledon threatened early on.

He did the same with two saves in the second half when Wimbledon launched a brief revival.

Blackpool wrenched the initiative when Terry Pashley pushed up for the first time on Saturday. His pin-point cross saw Brian Wilson jetting skywards and his punishing header gave Ray Goddard no chance.

Blackpool pushed home the advantage seven minutes after the restart when Bobby Kerr popped up at the far post to head his second goal of the season from Jim Weston’s superb cross.

Jimmy Weston scored a 72nd minute third with a lob intended as a centre which skied over Goddard.

At that time Blackpool were playing some lovely stuff, pouring men forward and round the back and showing good support and a lot of attacking ideas.

The Blackpool defence responded to McAlister’s call with a solid display, Maxie Thompson making some good tackles and finding time for some inventive attacking bursts and it all moulded into an efficient team display culminating in that second half flourish.

But there were no doubts about the man of the match: Blackpool’s Tony Kellow.

He showed great control and mobility in the first half, holding the ball sometimes against three defenders and bringing team-mates into the game.

Blackpool made one change from the side which drew at Peterborough United in midweek, bringing back Brian Wilson into the attack and leaving out defender Dick Malone who made his first-team comeback in midweek after injury.

Blackpool obviously did not want to play only two men up in a home match.

Wimbledon were without ace goal scorer Alan Clark, whom Blackpool watched for a long time last season, and included Wally Downes, the nephew of the ex-British boxer Terry Downes.

Blackpool kicked towards the Kop against a Wimbledon side making their first visit to Bloomfield Road.

Doyle and Smith were showing up well for Blackpool and after a good move between them, Smith’s cross just eluded Kellow.

Pool were put in trouble by Leslie’s quick turn on the left-hand side of their box and he was clean through with the goal at his mercy.

But McAlister read the situation brilliantly and raced out to make a brave block at the striker’s feet as he prepared to tuck the ball away.

McEwan’s left-footed shot was blocked but Blackpool were caught in a good Wimbledon break. Downes made a fine run and Parsons swept over a cross which left Ketteridge unmarked a couple of yards in front of a virtually open net.

He had a free header and put it towards the far corner but McAlister went full length to make a great one-handed save.

Blackpool took the lead after 40 minutes when Wilson scored with a beautiful header.

It was fitting Kellow should set up the goal who held the ball well and made space with an intelligent pass to Pashley on the left.

Pashley delayed his cross but in the end it was a pinpoint centre and Wilson scaled the heights to plant a jack-knife header into the bottom corner of the net.

Blackpool increased their lead after 52 minutes when Bobby Kerr headed his second goal for the club, nearly an exact replica of his first.

Kellow turned a defender and slid a good ball to Weston whose persistence carried him past the defence and he put over an excellent cross for Kerr at the far post to nod home accurately.

Blackpool went 3-0 up after 72 minutes through Jimmy Weston.

Kellow’s shot cannoned off a defender and Weston lobbed it straight back, probably as a high cross, and the ball skied over Goddard and dropped into the net to give Weston a deserved first goal of the season.

Blackpool: McAlister, Thompson, Pashley, Doyle, Suddaby, McEwan, Kerr, Kellow, Wilson, Weston, Smith. Sub: Malone

Wimbledon: Goddard, Perkins, Jones, Galliers, Bowgett, Cunningham, Ketteridge, Parsons, Leslie, Downes, Knowles. Sub: Briley

Attendance: 4,556