Blackpool 4-2 Bolton Wanderers - AET

  • August 09, 2016 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton were dumped out of the EFL Cup at the first-round stage, after going down to a 4-2 extra-time defeat at the hands of Blackpool.

Jamie Proctor had given Wanderers the lead on the stroke of half-time, but a quick-fire double from Kelvin Mellor and Brad Potts turned the game in the Seasiders' favour with just 12 minutes remaining.

The visitors forced extra-time in stoppage time, as Kaiyne Woolery pounced on a mistake to slot home an equaliser, but it was the League Two side who advanced as strikes from Jim McAlister and substitute John Herron sealed victory and extended Bolton's winless away run to 27 matches in all competitions.

Phil Parkinson made seven changes to the side that started against Sheffield United on Saturday, with Dean Moxey, Mark Beevers, Chris Taylor and Lawrie Wilson the only ones to retain their places.

Mark Davies captained the side in the absence of Darren Pratley, with Jay Spearing amongst the substitutes, while Proctor was handed his competitive debut after sitting out the win over the Blades through injury.

Bolton were the quickest out of the starting blocks, with Liam Trotter heading into the arms of Sam Slocombe inside three minutes, although Beevers was soon required to clear the danger at the other end after McAlister had got in behind the Wanderers defence.

Dean Moxey was the first to threaten, but he failed to direct his 25-yard strike on target, shortly before play was halted as Blackpool were forced into a substitution - with Brad Potts coming on for the injured Jamille Matt.

Bolton saw appeals for a penalty turned down when Chris Taylor went to ground on the edge of the Blackpool box after play had resumed, before Ben Amos was called into action for the first time when Mark Cullen shot straight at him on 25 minutes.

Then, like the home side, the visitors were forced into a change as Derik Osede, recently back from a hamstring strain, was forced off after appearing to catch his studs in the turf. Josh Vela came on to replace him.

Amos was required to deny Mark Yeates shortly before the half-hour, getting down to keep out a shot after the Blackpool midfielder had worked his way into dangerous territory.

Both sides could sense a goal at this stage - first, Davies fired over for Bolton after neat link-up play with Trotter, before Jim McAlister would have scored but for a timely deflection at the other end.

Alex Finney would then come even closer, seeing a header come back off the Blackpool crossbar after Beevers had seen an effort cleared off the line, before the latter volleyed over from the resulting corner.

The goal did arrive in the closing seconds of the half, with Trotter dinking a ball into the box, leaving Proctor free at the far post to head beyond Slocombe and send Wanderers in at the break with a one-goal lead.

There were no further changes to either side at the start of the second period, which began with referee Darren Bond once again turning down penalty appeals - as a shot from Trotter appeared to strike the arm of Potts inside the Blackpool box.

Davies then embarked on a run forward, first seeing his progress halted by a combination of defenders, then, secondly, playing a one-two with Proctor before seeing a shot charged down.

Tom Walker fired over and Trotter fired straight at Slocombe, as Bolton continued to press for a second, while Taylor sliced way off-target as the game reached the midway point of the half.

Blackpool came agonisingly close to drawing level from the next attack, but Amos produced an instinctive reaction stop to turn away a goalbound shot from Yeates.

Unselfish play from Davies put Gary Madine in a shooting position with 20 minutes to go, but his shot was blocked and acted as a catalyst for the hosts to spring into life and turn the game on its head in the space of just four minutes.

With 74 on the clock, Mellor stole in unmarked to fire past Amos at the far post, before Potts completed the turnaround on 78 by getting on the end of a corner to fire the ball past a helpless goalkeeper to put Blackpool into a surprise 2-1 lead.

Their hard work was almost undone within seconds, as Mellor just managed to clear his own crossbar with a defensive header, before Finney was denied by the woodwork for a second time as he headed against the inside of the post from the resulting corner.

Four minutes of time were added for stoppages at the end of the game, and it proved enough for Bolton to force extra-time as Woolery capitalised on a slip at the back to round Slocombe and slot the ball into the empty Blackpool net to bring the game level at 2-2 at the end of 90 minutes.

Both sides took a lackadaisical to the opening period of extra-time, with Taylor coming closest for Wanderers with a volley that narrowly cleared the bar, but the deadlock was broken five minutes into the second extra-half as McAlister was afforded too much time and space to drill home from inside the box and restore the Seasiders' advantage.

Cullen should have put the game to bed seconds later, somehow failing to find a way past Amos, but Blackpool did end the contest with five minutes to play as Herron completed a counter-attacking move with an outstanding individual goal that saw the game end 4-2 in favour of the fourth-tier side.

Defeat extends Bolton's winless run on the road to 27 matches, dating back to April 2015, and they now face back-to-back away matches, starting with a first-ever trip to AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.

Blackpool: Slocombe, Mellor, Aimson, Nolan, Robertson, Daniel, Cain, McAlister, Yeates (Herron 105), Cullen (Cameron 90+1), Matt (Potts 17)
Subs Not Used: Letheren, Osayi-Samuel, Higham
Booked: Potts
Goals: Mellor 74, Potts 78, McAlister 109, Herron 115

Bolton Wanderers: Amos, Wilson, Beevers, Finney, Moxey, Trotter, Osede (Vela 25), Davies, Walker (Woolery 80), Taylor, Proctor (Madine 63)
Subs Not Used: Buxton, Spearing, Howard, Wilkinson
Booked: Davies, Woolery
Goals: Proctor 45+2, Woolery 90+2

Referee: Darren Bond
Attendance: 3,633

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
1 Accrington Stanley 0 0
2 Barnsley 0 0
3 Bolton Wanderers 0 0
4 Bristol Rovers 0 0
5 Burton Albion 0 0
View Full Standings >>


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