SEASIDERS SLUMP GOES ON AS DUNN SHOWS STYLE

No win in 12 for the Tan­ger­ines

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Robert Doman

BLACK­POOL in­terim man­ager Barry Fer­gu­son in­sists he is the right man for the full-time job – de­spite see­ing his side slip to a 12th league game with­out a win.

Black­burn scored ei­ther side of the break in the Lancashire derby as David Dunn rolled back the years to piece to­gether a mes­meris­ing run be­fore un­leash­ing a shot that nes­tled neatly in the bot­tom cor­ner.

And with the Seasiders of­fer­ing lit­tle in the way of po­tency up front, new Rovers cap­tain Grant Han­ley snapped up his side’s sec­ond from a cor­ner to get Black­burn’s play-off push back on track and leave the visi­tors still search­ing for their first win since Novem­ber.

“We are in a bat­tle now and the play­ers need to re­alise that,” said Fer­gu­son.

“David Dunn has waltzed through our mid­field and our de­fence to put them ahead, but we were look­ing good un­til that hap­pened.

“It will take a bit of time but I want the team to be more at­tack minded.

“But it is up to the play­ers where they want to be play­ing next year and if that isn’t mo­ti­va­tion then I don’t know what is.

“We just need some be­lief and I think I can in­stil that into the them.

“This is with­out doubt a qual­ity squad and it is good enough to play in this di­vi­sion.

“The play­ers need to be­lieve that too and with the ones we have brought in I think we can turn this around.”

Rovers favourite Dunn opened the scor­ing with a piece of in­di­vid­ual bril­liance to skip past two de­fend­ers and fire in a 20th-minute shot from the edge of Black­pool’s penalty area.

In a rare vis­it­ing at­tack Steve Davies tested Paul Robin­son from range with Black­burn’s for­mer Eng­land goal­keeper meet­ing the chal­lenge at his near post.

But Jor­dan Rhodes was un­for­tu­nate not to dou­ble the home side’s lead when the ball ric­o­cheted off his chest and just past the post from Kirk Broad­foot’s mis­placed header.

Han­ley sent a loop­ing header over the cross­bar from Tom Cair­ney’s free-kick as the sec­ond-half got un­der way.

And Davies squan­dered a good chance to pull the Seasiders level at the other end when he found the side net­ting from just six yards out fol­low­ing good work from Faris Haroun.

Rhodes glanced a header wide when he met Tommy Spurr’s near-post cross and Han­ley faired like­wise af­ter Todd Kane had whipped the ball into the dan­ger zone.

Rudy Gest­ede watched

another header fall shy of the up­right as Black­burn re­tained the up­per hand, but Stephen Dob­bie saw a shot de­flected past the Rovers post as he in­spired Black­pool on the at­tack.

Gest­ede saw another ef­fort touched out for a cor­ner from the out­stretched leg of Gary Macken­zie, but Black­burn added their sec­ond of the af­ter­noon from the re­sult­ing set-piece. Han­ley fi­nally bundling.0 home Craig Conway’s cross seven min­utes from time.

And with no late Black­pool re­cov­ery in the off­ing, Rovers boss Gary Bowyer had plenty to smile about.

“It was im­por­tant to turn our per­for­mances into points and I thought we did a very pro­fes­sional job,” Bowyer said.

“It took a bit of bril­liance from David Dunn to un­lock Black­pool but then I think we should have scored more con­sid­er­ing the pos­ses­sion we had in the first-half.

“We needed to be more clin­i­cal but that gives us some­thing to work on.

“We are get­ting the blend right in terms of youth and ex­pe­ri­ence and we have reaped the re­wards in this one.

“We showed good char­ac­ter and re­silience and we never pan­icked and it was also nice to see Grant Han­ley cel­e­brate the Black­burn cap­taincy with a goal.

“It is a tough league and we can’t get car­ried away by putting a win on the board.

“But is a good chal­lenge for us and we will give it ev­ery­thing that we’ve got.”

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