The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Andy Moore

BUR­TON AL­BION boss Nigel Clough was de­lighted to see his side go top of League One as Mark Duffy’s goal helped them beat a strug­gling Black­pool, de­spite play­ing the whole of the sec­ond half with ten men.

Rob­bie Weir was shown a sec­ond yel­low card be­fore the break but Duffy pro­duced a goal to match his per­for­mance, curl­ing a sublime shot be­yond busy Black­pool goal­keeper Colin Doyle just af­ter the hour mark to en­sure three points at the Pirelli Sta­dium.

Clough said: “It was a re­mark­able per­for­mance and re­sult and the spirit we have shown was ex­cel­lent.We said to them at half­time, don’t change any­thing be­cause af­ter the first ten min­utes we were dom­i­nat­ing the game but lack­ing that cut­ting edge.

“We sent them out in the sec­ond half to at­tack when we could have made de­fen­sive changes.

“We didn’t want to send that mes­sage out but in­stead go out and at­tack and some of the foot­ball we played in the sec­ond half, was the best we have seen since we re­turned.

“It was a stun­ning goal from Mark Duffy, we’ve been try­ing to get a striker to hold the ball up like Stu­art Beavon did and it was a lovely fin­ish.”

The home side started brightly with Duffy go­ing close with a drive nar­rowly wide of the post be­fore Black­pool re­sponded, forc­ing John McLaugh­lin into a smart save to deny Bright Osayi-Sa­muel.

Nasser El Khay­ati saw a free-kick de­flected nar­rowly wide and Duffy’s shot was well tipped around the cor­ner by Doyle as the home side con­tin­ued to press for the open­ing goal.

Weir’s send­ing off just be­fore the break made Bur­ton’s chances for the win seem­ingly much harder and there was lit­tle op­tion for the ref­eree, with both fouls need­less af­ter be­ing caught in pos­ses­sion.

De­spite be­ing down to ten men, the Brew­ers con­tin­ued to press early in the sec­ond half with Lu­cas Akins and Duffy forc­ing a se­ries of smart saves from Doyle as Bur­ton ramped up the pres­sure.

The elu­sive goal came just af­ter the hour when Duffy curled a shot past Doyle af­ter a neat in­ter­change on the edge of the box with Beavon to give Clough’s side the lead.

For a team with a man ad­van­tage, Black­pool looked all at sea, barely mus­ter­ing a chance as man­ager Neil McDon­ald looked on in dis­may at his side’s ab­ject per­for­mance with the away fans voic­ing their dis­plea­sure.

The Seasiders fi­nally woke up with just 15 min­utes left but they could not muster an equaliser and Bur­ton nearly snatched a sec­ond late on, with Doyle again saving his side with a fine save from sub Tim Thiele.

McDon­ald said: “Los­ing is hor­ri­ble but first half I thought we con­tained them and pos­si­bly should have taken the lead.

“But for half an hour in the sec­ond half we never got go­ing, we didn’t pass the ball and we didn’t stop them from play­ing.

“When we got the ball, we didn’t pass it and show the com­po­sure we had in the first half and that’s the most dis­ap­point­ing as­pect.

“We cre­ated lots of chances in the fi­nal 15 min­utes and could have taken a point.”

PIC­TURES: Me­dia Im­age


Al­bion Bur­ton SMILE THEN! Mark Duffy is con­grat­u­lated by team mates af­ter scor­ing the win­ner

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