Blackpool 0 - West Bromwich Albion 2

Date: Tuesday 18th April 2023 Live on Sky Red Button
Competition: Sky Bet Championship
(4-2-3-1) Grimshaw, Gabriel, Nelson, Thorniley, Lyons, Fiorini (Holmes, 75), Patino, Rogers (Bowler, 64), Anderson (Carey, 45), Hamilton, Yates
Unused subs: Maxwell, Connolly, Dougall, Garbutt
(4-2-3-1) Palmer 7.8, Furlong 5.5, Ajayi 6.8, Pieters 6.4, Townsend 7.3, Molumby 7.1, Chalobah 5.3 (Gardner-Hickman, 40 6.9), Wallace 5.9, Swift 5.4 (Rogic, 71 4.1), Grant 4.9 (Albrighton, 79 4.1), Thomas-Asante 7.4
Unused subs: Griffiths, Livermore, Malcolm, Faal
Manager: Carlos Corberán  6.4
Scorers: Thomas-Asante (18), Gardner-Hickman (60)
Referee: Stephen Martin 6.2
Attendance: 10,705   Home Fans 6.3   Away Fans 8.3

Brendan Clegg:

Fantastic result this one. The adversity seems to have galvanised us a bit.

Given the available options CC got it right I thought, going with Grant to replace the injured Dike albeit in a 4-2-3-1 and not the more adventurous 4-3-3 that turned it around for us at the weekend.

And although we started poorly and although our quality was still off at times, what was most promising was that the aggression and running we showed in the 2nd half against Stoke were there from the off and maintained for pretty much the whole game.

Every player, including Grant and Swift, did the running and battling as a priority and it was enough for us to get the points.

I thought Blackpool were a brave and adventurous side lacking quality in both boxes, and the way they moved the ball and committed players made for a really entertaining game.

On another day they might’ve punished us having probably shaded the chances but, after they hit the post and then we nicked a goal from a corner via great BTA reactions, it just felt like it would be our day.

Even Chalobah, who had done okay, succumbing to what looked like a rake down his Achilles didn’t knock us. The introduction of TGH’s energy probably suited us and this… and indeed our performance… was epitomised by our second, hunting them down deep in their territory, stealing the ball and then punishing them.

At 2-0 we became more pragmatic, keeping the ball when needed to run down the clock but also playing percentages when required. The subs all did a decent job and we might’ve even nicked a third.

Credit to Corberan for tweaking things and perhaps being less idealistic. Getting results with our injury list is impressive.

  • Palmer - 7 Made a huge difference. Is definitely and his kicking with both feet and decisions were spot on. Also seems to be a lucky charm keeper.
  • Furlong - 7 Better defensively, missed a big chance.
  • Ajayi - 7 Played his way into form. I’m sure Palmer helps. Threw himself at everything.
  • Pieters - 7 Solid and calm.
  • Townsend - 7 They targeted him and he stood firm. Still busting a gut to get forward I injury time.
  • Chalobah - 7 Was doing quite well. One turn of pace burst caught the eye.
  • Molumby - 7 Superb in there snapping away but also used the ball really well.
  • Wallace - 7 Improved showing and just bags of running.
  • Swift - 7 Also got through the yards tonight like it meant something. Contribution to both goals.
  • Grant - 7 To be fair, he grafted away all game and helped to stretch them. Threatened at times.
  • BTA - 7 Great goal and effort but playing a bit close to the edge for my liking… we can’t afford a suspension now.
  • TGH - 7 Did really well after a tough outing last time. Effort and drive.
  • Rogic & Albrighton didn’t let us down.

One game at a time then!