Blackpool 1-0 Wigan: Match Report
Blackpool 1-0 Wigan: Match Report - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game as it happened.
Ince penalty wins it for Blackpool
Blackpool earned the Lancashire derby bragging rights with a hard fought 1-0 win over Wigan at Bloomfield Road in the Sky Bet Championship.
Tom Ince rifled home a first-half penalty after Dan Gosling had been felled by Scott Carson and though the Latics struck the crossbar twice in the second half, the Seasiders held on for all three points after James McClean was sent off for violent conduct in the closing stages.
The early kick-off brought with it a sleepy start to proceedings, with both sides fragmented in their build-up and struggling to generate any cohesive pattern of play.
There were chances at either end inside the opening 15 minutes. Wigan engineered the game's first opportunity and a golden one at that, as Nick Powell headed wide of a gaping goal, six yards out, after Grant Holt had headed Ben Watson's free-kick back across goal.
Blackpool then responded with a chance of their own when Ince volleyed over the bar inside the box from Craig Cathcart's right-wing cross, with the opening goal of the game arriving shortly after.
On 23 minutes, a lofted pass over the top from Neal Bishop set Gosling free inside the box, with the on-loan midfielder tripped by Carson as he took the ball in his stride.
Referee Mark Haywood pointed straight to the spot and Ince duly stepped up and drilled a confident penalty into the top left-hand corner to make it 1-0 to the hosts.
The goal gave the game a much-needed spark and Blackpool could well have been 2-0 up at the break.
A 34th-minute cross from Ince, at the end of a jinking run, was palmed away by Carson straight into the path of Bishop, but the midfielder's shot was charged down 12 yards out.
The Seasiders - without manager Paul Ince as a result of a five-match stadium ban - emerged for the second half with a spring in their step.
Just two minutes after the restart both Ricardo Fuller and Gosling had successive shots blocked inside the box and from the resulting corner the Jamaican striker saw his near post flick cleared away inside the six-yard box, with the ball heading for the back of the net.
Wigan looked out of sorts and the anonymous Powell - operating on his own up front - was withdrawn along with Jordi Gomez on 67 minutes, with Holt and Marc Antoine-Fortune coming on to add attacking impetus.
The changes gave the Latics a much-needed cutting edge and after Fuller chipped over the bar, 25 yards out, from Gosling's through-ball, the visitors struck the woodwork twice in a matter of minutes.
Firstly Leon Barnett found the crossbar with his header on 75 minutes before Holt glanced a header against the upright from James Perch's left-wing cross, with Blackpool under increasing pressure.
Ince and Blackpool could have added to their lead late on, but McClean's straight red card, after reacting to an apparent stamp, added salt to Wigan's wounds.
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