Blackpool 1 MK Dons 0
By Editor
Saturday 12 Aug 2017 19:26:00
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We wrote in the preview for this game that the start to any new season is all about ticking off all those unwanted records that can build as a campaign goes on. The good news for Gary Bowyer's side is that they took out three of them in one fell swoop. First three points, first home win and first clean sheet and in the process they again showed that they appear undaunted by the step up to League One. Last weekend a point would have been a bit of a steel but the Seasiders certainly were equal to Bradford for long periods, whilst today against MK Dons they could and should have put the game to bed a lot earlier than when the referee blew his full time whistle. Some better decision making and more accuracy in front of goal could have given 'Pool much more than the one goal margin of victory, but it's the three points which were important and they were deservedly gained.

Bloomfield Road still looks post-apocolyptic on a matchday and MK Dons with their disappointing turn out of just 567 fans hardly added to the numbers (chants of 'your support is as bad as ours' rang out ironically from the away end). However, there were signs of a few more bodies around the ground and whether they were returnees, tourists or interested on-lookers we'll never know. On the pitch, there were plenty of new faces and, in fairness, the lack of numbers unphased them. Jimmy Ryan has probably fitted in to the tangerine shirt more than anyone else and as Captain he is a born leader. For those yet to see him he is the new Richie Wellens in so many ways - stature, attitude, ability and swagger. Curtis Tilt and Nick Anderton have come from non-league and made the step up without breaking in to a sweat whilst the one to catch the eye today was Sean Longstaff and you can see why there was a queue of clubs for his services. However, it was Mark Cullen who lead the line and was arguably the Seasiders stand out player with Kyle Vassell out with his annual post opening game injury.

Despite only being in this league two seasons ago, there still seems a bit of the sense of the unknown going in to these games but Blackpool took this game to the visitors with plenty of possession and that paid dividends when Solomon-Otabor played in Sean Longstaff who found the bottom corner with a quality shot. It should have been game over shortly after when Bright Samuel found Solomon-Otabor but the youngster got the ball caught around his feet and missed a golden opportunity. Bright-Samuel was presented a similar opportunity himself after half an hour but bent the ball past the post. MK Dons shaded things after the break, Solomon-Otabor missing another chance to double the 'Pool's lead, whilst at the other end the visitors did create some half chances but either sprurned them or forced some decent saves from Allsop.

Three points takes the pressure off any side at this stage of the season and moves the Seasiders up to a comfortable mid-table position - which on the basis of the last couple of games is a position where this side should be more than capable of reaching. Mellor and Vassell were missed and there's still that nagging doubt about how many goals there are in our strikers and surely a new forward will still be on Bowyer's shopping list. The Red Arrows provided a fly past towards the end of the game and it was a change to see a plane without an 'Oyston Out' banner over the ground.

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