2 goals in each half saw Rovers win 4-2 away from home for the second time in a week.
Goals from Marcus Antonsson, Bradley Dack, skipper Charlie Mulgrew and Paul Downing meant we left the Fylde coast with 3 points in the bag.
The game against the Seasiders was one of our games in hand, with the tie originally scheduled in early October. With only 1 other League One game taking place, a Rovers win would see the Blues move up to 4th place in the table, and only 3 points behind Shrewsbury in the automatic promotion spots.
Tony Mowbray made 2 changes from the side that triumphed over Bristol Rovers at Ewood on Saturday, with Danny Graham and Elliott Bennett in the side at the expense of Joe Nuttall and Corry Evans, who were both on the bench.
Both teams started brightly and either side could have scored in the opening 15 minutes, but there were 25 minutes on the clock before a chance was converted into a goal. Super Swede Marcus Antonsson latching onto a poor pass back and slotting the ball first time past the oncoming keeper.
However, in typical Rovers fashion, an equaliser was conceded just 4 minutes later when Jimmy Ryan’s searching free-kick found the head of Kelvin Mellor who made amends for his error by looping the ball past David Raya to make it 1-1.
For the next 15 minutes, the Pool really peppered the Rovers goal and was unlucky not to go 2-1 up. However, Rovers weathered the seaside storm and took the lead in fortuitous fashion just on 45 minutes; Bradley Dack pouncing on a poor clearance and driving the ball through Allsop’s legs to put Rovers 2-1 up at the interval.
The half-time whistle went and Rovers were leading 2-1.
Rovers flew out of the blocks in the second half and could have made it 3-1 just seconds after the re-start when Danny Graham’s header had to be flicked over the bar.
10 minutes later, Rovers were even closer to doubling their advantage when Raya found Antonsson with a long ball, and after a brilliant run which deserved a goal at the end of it, he could only find the far post, and the ball was cleared to safety.
Rovers finally made it 3-1 on 64 minutes, Mulgrew nestling an 18-yard free kick into the bottom left corner to score for the third game in a row and send the over 2,200 Rovers fans into raptures behind that goal.
Just 3 minutes later and the game was put beyond all doubt when Paul Downing scored his first goal for the club after a goalmouth scramble. It wasn’t the prettiest way to open your account for the club, but they all count.
With 15 minutes remaining Danny Philliskirk gave the remaining Blackpool fans a slither of hope with a well taken shot into the far corner to reduce the deficit slightly, but Rovers never looked like giving Blackpool a chance after that, coming close to scoring a 5th late on through Antonsson and then substitute Joe Nuttall.
The full-time whistle went and Rovers made it 4 wins in a row.
Rovers now have to wait until Sunday for the next game, that being the FA Cup Round 2 tie at home to Crewe Alexandra. The buildup to that game will be right here on roverschat.com.
Thanks for reading.
Come on you Blues!