Blues beaten by AFC Blackpool

Paul Fildes
Paul Fildes

It’s just one win in nine for Nelson now after the Blues were beaten by relegation threatened AFC Blackpool at the Mechanics Ground.

Manager Paul Fildes made four changes from the side that came out on the wrong side of a 3-1 defeat in the local derby against Barnoldswick Town.

The alterations looked to have made a difference early on as the Admirals started out on the front foot, penning their hosts in their own half.

However, despite forcing two good openings the visitors were unable to take advantage by getting on the scoresheet.

Further efforts rained in on the home goal from Bradley Wicks and Stephen Whitley but again they were unable to find a way past goalkeeper Andrew Speight.

Ollie Evans also had a great opportunity to break the deadlock when Mark Sharples incisive pass carved open the home side’s rearguard but the forward fired over the bar when well-positioned.

Evans was unable to find the target with another sight of goal moments later and from the resulting corner Speight foiled Tom Bradley who had benefited from unconvincing attempts to clear.

The hosts rarely threatened as the game crept towards the midway point in the first half but Stuart Parker’s side took the lead against the run of play.

With the Blues pushing forward, Ben Seears mounted the counter and found Jack Williams who slotted the ball past Sean Davis to make it 1-0.

Nelson lived dangerously at the start of the second half but gradually found a foothold in the fixture.

The away side forced a succession of corners but they went without reward as Blackpool, expertly marshalled by former Blue Marc Taylor, were equal to everything that Nelson had to offer.

At that point Fildes opted to make a triple substitution with Whitley, Ashley Brierley and Nathan Webb replaced by Adam Nuttall, Will Threlkeld and Ryan Charnley.

A rallying finish from Nelson did give them hope as they applied the pressure but the home goal led a charmed life with Speight denying Waqas Azam with his legs.

Victory for the hosts saw them climb out of the bottom three in the North West Counties Premier Division while Nelson, who host 1874 Northwich at Victoria Park tomorrow, dropped to 17th.