Hallam FC 4 AFC Blackpool 3: FA Vase loss on AFC's return to action

AFC Blackpool’s return to action wasn’t a dream one as they exited the FA Vase at the hands of Hallam FC.
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The first half saw six goals but, sadly for AFC, they just couldn’t complete a comeback which saw Martin Baird’s men score three goals on the road.

The hosts took the lead after just two minutes as a corner played into the back post was headed back into the box to find Max Pemberton, who got the final touch.

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AFC equalised a minute later, however, when a corner found skipper Connor Ikin, who headed back across goal and looped the ball over the keeper.

AFC Blackpool's Jamie Thomas has a shot on goal   Picture: Adam GeeAFC Blackpool's Jamie Thomas has a shot on goal   Picture: Adam Gee
AFC Blackpool's Jamie Thomas has a shot on goal Picture: Adam Gee

A third goal then came in the sixth minute when Hallam regained the lead as Kieren Watson outmuscled keeper Will Marment and reacted quickest to tap home.

Four minutes later and Jamie Thomas’ solo run ended with him stinging the hands of the Hallam keeper.

The resulting corner fell to Ben Duffield but the striker was unable to find the target from the edge of the box.

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A dramatic start continued on 15 minutes when Hallam were awarded a penalty after Ikin was deemed to have pulled down his man, Watson stepping up to double his tally.

Two minutes after that and AFC pulled a goal back when Adam Sumner drove a free-kick into the corner to make it 3-2.

Hallam then looked to control the game and pinned AFC back into their own half, scoring a fourth goal on 34 minutes when Watson completed his hat-trick from close range.

Conah Bishop then kept his nerve to clear off the line, heading behind as AFC trailed 4-2 at the break.

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The hosts came close to adding to their lead early in the second half but were denied by last-ditch defending, Ikin blocking the first shot before Marment used his legs to keep out the follow-up and then gratefully grasped the ball.

Thomas was unable to keep a long-range effort on target but AFC were awarded a way back into the game on the hour.

A long searching ball forward from Carnan Dawson found Duffield, who went down inside the area.

Thomas kept his nerve to slot past the keeper and reduce the deficit.

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The hosts saw a penalty appeal of their own turned down, while at the other end, AFC substitute Mark Buchan headed off target.

AFC continued to pressure the hosts, looking for a fourth goal, but could not make the breakthrough.

Ikin was judged to have fouled the keeper in challenging for a free-kick before Buchan fired wide with three minutes remaining.

AFC Blackpool: Marment, Bishop, Dawson, Cassidy, Higham, Sumner, Robinson, Thomas, Morris, Duffield, Bishop. Subs: Buchan, Roberts, Harrison, Whitehead, Aspinall.

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