Blackpool 2 Cheltenham Town 1

Last updated : 12 December 2006 By The Seasider

A late goal by Wes Hoolahan gave Blackpool a hard-fought three points in difficult conditions against struggling Cheltenham Town.

The come from behind victory was made all the tougher by howling gales and occasional heavy rain showers which made passing football extremely difficult.

The visitors went ahead when, in the midst of one torrential downpour, striker Damian Spencer prodded home his first of the season from close range after some shoddy Blackpool defending.

But Pool managed to find their way back into the game in drier conditions when Ian Evatt stepped smartly out of the defence and threaded an incisive ball to Hoolahan on the left wing and the Irishman cut inside before crossing perfectly for Andy Morrell to head home from close range.

But the weather was the real winner of the first 45 minutes with Blackpool even forced to accommodate Cheltenham's small band of travelling supporters in the home area of the ground rather than make them suffer a wintry night in the uncovered East Stand.

In truth the second half was little better for the most part.

Six minutes after the break Blackpool reorganised with the ineffective Adrian Forbes replaced by target man Ben Burgess.

But most of Blackpool's chances came from long-range efforts, with Morrell going closest on the hour mark.

But, with 11 minutes left, a neat header by David Fox released Hoolahan and the little Irish winger, on loan from Scottish outfit Livingston, jinked and swerved his way to the centre of the penalty area before shooting past Shane Higgs.

Hoolahan's shot, like his cross in the first half, came off his previously unheralded right foot.

Town pushed hard after spending much of the second half trying to run the clock down and were almost rewarded when their outstanding attacking player, Brian Wilson, hit a shot on the turn which had to be saved with great reflexes from Rhys Evans