MATCH REPORT: Exeter 2-2 Blackpool

Blackpool squandered a 2-0 lead for the second week running as an injury time header from Reuben Reid secured Exeter a point at St James Park.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 25th February 2017, 2:06 pm
Updated Wednesday, 1st March 2017, 9:06 am
Brad Potts scored Pool's second.
Brad Potts scored Pool's second.

Pool looked set to inflict just Exeter’s first defeat at home since November after goals from Colin Daniel and Brad Potts had given them the lead.

But the Seasiders were pegged back by an Ollie Watkins goal in first half injury time before Reuben Reid headed home at the death to bag a point.

The game had to be halted before it even really got going, with Exeter’s Robbie Simpson being stretchered off by paramedics with what looked to be a serious injury.

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The forward had attempted to latch onto a threatening cross at the near post but went down howling in pain, causing the game to be stopped for more than five minutes.

The cross in question eventually found its way to David Wheeler at the back post but he was unable to steer his effort towards goal, as the hosts looked to capitalise on their promising start.

But Gary Bowyer’s men were well in the game and took the lead with just 20 minutes gone, with Colin Daniel tapping in for his fourth goal of the season.

The goal came after some superb play by Brad Potts in the build up, as he surged into the box from the middle of the park before seeing his shot parried by Christy Pym to Daniel, who had the simple task of tapping into an empty net.

The Grecians had a good chance to get back on level terms with a free kick 30 yards out from goal, but their well-worked routine was eventually deflected wide of goal.

The hosts then came close from the following corner but Sam Slocombe saved comfortably from Jordan Moore-Taylor’s back post header.

Slocombe was forced into making another save as he got down to save well from Liam McAlinden’s flick.

Pool were gifted a second shortly before the interval thanks to another howler from the Exeter ‘keeper, who flapped at Sanmi Odelusi’s deflected effort leaving Brad Potts with the simple task of volleying into an empty net.

After an entertaining and equally balanced opening period, the Seasiders had looked set to hold a 2-0 lead at the break for the second week running, but the hosts pulled a goal back in the six minutes of injury time through substitute Ollie Watkins.

It was a completely avoidable goal from Pool’s point of view, with Andy Taylor being beaten far too easily on the edge of the box by Jack Stacey, who saw his shot saved by Slocombe leaving the dangerous Watkins with a simple tap in.

You would have expected Exeter to come out firing at the start of the second half but it sooned turned into a sluggish affair, with Pool happy to sit back and interrupt the tempo of the game.

Chances were few and far between but Sanmi Odelusi went close with his final action of the game before being substituted for debutant Ian Black, but Brad Potts’ cross dangerous cross just evaded him.

The hosts showed plenty of endeavour but they struggled to create any clear cut chances of note, but they became more threatening as time wore on.

Substitute Reuben Reid went close after being sent through on goal but Slocombe was there to produce a vital double stop.

Reid was presented with another priceless opportunity but he failed to get any power on his free header, which looped a yard or two wide of goal.

But it was third time lucky for Reid who powered home a header past Slocombe in the first minute of injury time.

Exeter: Pym, Stacey, Brown, Moore-Taylor, Woodman, Wheeler, James (Grant), Taylor, Harley, McAlinden (Reid), Simpson (Watkins)

Subs not used: Olejnik, Tillson, Croll, Sweeney

Blackpool: Slocombe, Mellor, Aimson, Robertson, Taylor, Flores, Potts, Daniel, Osayi-Samuel (Philliskirk), Odelusi (Black), Matt (Cullen)

Subs not used: Lyness, Nolan, Payne, Gnanduillet

Referee: Kevin Johnson

Attendance: 4,125 (228 Blackpool)