Pep seeks positives in another U’s defeat
OXFORD manager Pep Clotet hopes his side’s defeat at Blackpool can act as a catalyst for the rest of the season.
Kyle Vassell and Callum Cooke set Blackpool on their way with early goals before James Henry gave Oxford late hope – only for Vassell to strike again in injurytime to seal the win.
Oxford have now won just one of their last five games, but Clotet wants to use this defeat as motivation.
“We are of course feeling frustrated because things did not go our way but it’s a tough place to come – they haven’t lost here since April,” Clotet said.
“We were affected by the goals but this group has shown character before and showed we are on the right track and progressing.
“This is a bad game and a result and we feel sorry for the fans. It is early in the season and this might help us to keep progressing.
“The game was thrown away in the first half especially in the fact that they scored early and soon scored the second goal as well. We paid a high price for those goals.”
Blackpool were ahead after six minutes through a stunning goal from Vassell.
The forward held off his marker and hit a leftfooted shot from 25 yards which curled in low off the right-hand post.
And the lead was doubled on 15 minutes with another superb strike as Cooke picked it up 25 yards out and rifled the ball into the same corner.
Henry grabbed one back, tapping home a rebound in the 89th minute.
But Blackpool responded in added time as Vassell thumped home a free-kick and are now unbeaten in seven league games.
The newly-promoted Seasiders are up to fourth in the table and have won seven league games in a row at home, leaving manager Gary Bowyer delighted.
“It was a very pleasing performance, in the first half especially,” Bowyer said.
“If you’re being critical, there are a number of chances we created and didn’t capitalise on. “We need to be more ruthless in front of goal to finish teams off in games.
“Credit to the players in the squad who have stepped up into a new league.
“You never know in a new league but the way they’ve taken to how we want them to play has been really good.
“We are delighted with the progress we are making.
“Wherever you play you want to be competitive and that’s what we’ve worked on.
“That’s the mainstay of the group, home or away.”
STAR MAN KYLE VASSELL Blackpool