Points Shared at Ewood
Blackburn Rovers managed to steal a late deserved point against a gallant Blackpool outfit, with away Captain Charlie Adam scoring a brace, which was later countered by efforts from Chris Samba, and a last minute strike by Junior Hoillet.
Infront of a vocal home crowd who had nothing but a win on their minds, Steve Kean resorted to a standard 4-4-2 formation.
With relegation in sight for both teams, it was Blackburn who got off to the brighter of starts. Early pressure through Emerton and Diouf on the flanks created opportunities for Jermaine Jones and Ryan Nelsen, however their attempts on goal were deflected wide. Hoillet and Olsson were as pacy as ever, flying down the flanks causing early trouble for the Blackpool defence.
Another early corner for Rovers created the next key opportunity, after a round of pinball in the penalty box, Steve Nzonzi headed wide from 10 yards out. Blackpool on the other hand, didnt waste their chances.
A free kick from Charlie Adam, 30 yards out, found Luke Varney in the clear, his first touch volley straight into the back of the net. However the assistants flag was up, correctly ruling Varney offside by the slightest of margins. Blackpool weren't to be denied moments later, as controversy struck. A delightful reverse through ball by Puncheon put Taylor-Fletcher in the clear. A last ditch tackle by Nelsen saw Taylor-Fletcher's attempt scoop over the goal. A whistle went and most shaped up for a corner, however Howard Webb had other thoughts in mind, pointing at the spot....Charlie Adam stepped up, bottom left corner, 1-0 Blackpool.
Minutes later, Blackpool doubled their advantage, stunning the home crowd. Blackpool were awarded a free kick, 25 metres out. Adam stepped up, bending it into the top right corner of the net, leaving Paul Robinson to watch. 2-0 Blackpool.
Rovers were shellshocked, and couldnt regain the momentum they had early in the half, as Blackpool held onto a 2-0 buffer at the break.
Manager Kean must of had a few kind words to say at the break, as Blackburn came out and dominated. Nzonzi almost pulled one back early, striking the side netting, but Samba was not to be denied minutes later.
A lofted cross by Brett Emerton saw the ball bounce in the area, Diouf and Hoillet's attempts blocked, but Samba remained composed, taking 2 touches, then blasting into the bottom left corner. 2-1 Blackpool
On the hour mark, Phil Jones came on for Brett Emerton, who was picking himself up from a scathing challenge. It was a fine welcome back for Jones, recovering from injury which had kept him out since Christmas. Blackburn were on the surge, yet the final product was lacking. Olsson and Hoillet continued tormenting the Blackpool defence, but Diouf and Santa Cruz just couldnt connect with the final ball, as Blackpool stood stiff in their box.
It took 93 minutes, but parity was restored. Paul Robinson sent the ball into the box, which was half cleared by Kingson. It fell nicely to Hoillet, who headed it on the run, and into the back of the net, giving Blackburn a vital, vital point.
With Arsenal next, a win was needed here, but at half-time, any Rovers fan would of been happy with taking a point out of this game....
"It was an excellent fight back and I said this to the lads at half time, we were excellent in the first 20 minutes and we were unlucky to be behind'
"After we scored the crowd got behind us and I thought they were tremendous, they had a real good go and tried to dig ourselves of the game." (Goal.com)
'It might be the two we lost get us relegated,'... 'I don't know yet. I'm finding it absolutely enthralling. It's the tightest division it's ever been and there's about 12 teams that can go down' (The National)