Bowyer hails Blackpool's fighting spirit

Gary BowyerGary Bowyer
Gary Bowyer
Seasiders boss Gary Bowyer insists he learned a lot about the fighting qualities of his squad despite their agonising defeat at Mansfield.

Blackpool looked to be heading for a useful point against the Stags on Tuesday but succumbed to defeat after Danny Rose scored deep in stoppage time.

It meant Bowyer’s men failed to build on their back-to-back wins against Notts County and Leyton Orient, lost their six-match unbeaten run and dropped out of the League Two play-off zone.

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But Bowyer said his side’s performance showed him a lot about their character. “The manner of the defeat was frustrating but there were a lot of positives to be taken out of the game in terms of how we stood up to the fight,” he said.

“You always have that question hanging over the players about whether they can stand up to the fight and I thought we more than did that.”

The result leaves Pool with a balanced record of six wins, six draws and six defeats from their 18 League Two games.

But Bowyer refused to get too down about the Mansfield setback, preferring to focus on what lies ahead for his players.

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“Their goalkeeper (Scott Shearer) has made an outstanding save from Clark (Robertson) and that obviously proved to be a big moment, coupled with their winner,” he said. “We were two minutes away from saying, ‘What a great point it is’.

“I’m not going to get too carried away because they scored in the last minute.

“Obviously it was disappointing but there were a lot of lessons learned and a lot of positives to take away from it.

“We didn’t get too carried away after Saturday’s victory against Leyton Orient. It’s a long season and you’ve got to remain level-headed.”

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The Seasiders now turn their attention to tomorrow’s visit from rock-bottom Newport County. The Pool boss said it presents a fabulous opportunity to build on their form at home, where his men are unbeaten in five.

Bowyer added: “We have got a good, honest bunch here. They knew we didn’t play as well and didn’t created as many chances as we have been doing but they showed they can fight.

“The response from them has been positive in training, as it was straight after the game. They want to get straight back out there to continue our fabulous home form.”

Bowyer is hopeful Kyle Vassell will be fit to face Newport after missing Tuesdays game through injury.

The striker failed a fitness test on the morning of the match with a slight knock.

Fellow striker Jack Redshaw and goalkeeper Dean Lyness are Pool’s only other absentees.