Saturday, March 10, 2012
CHAMPIONSHIP : PETERBOROUGH UNITED - BLACKPOOL (Written Friday 10.00)
Just one win in twelve outings since Boxing Day for United, that came against a very out of sorts struggling Bristol City side and the goals have dried up for traditionally free scoring Posh, with just six in their other eleven starts in that sequence, which combined with no cleansheets, is a very dangerous combination. They have collected most of their points against teams at the wrong end of the table, beating only one top 6 side they have faced all season ( Cardiff City) and they conceded three in that and could/should have lost that by a couple of goals. They are likely to have Lee Tomlin back this weekend, he returned to training yesterday and that will help them offensively, but their real problems are at the other end of the pitch. They were defensively dire in the 3-0 home loss to Millwall on Tuesday, the visitors could easily have won by five and after the second goal went in, even the home match commentator said that " now Posh have a mountain to climb and do not even have a foot on the first step", which says it all about their current predicament.
Pool are very motivated to bounce back after blowing a halftime lead at Derby County in midweek, they looked composed and confortable at the break, when they should have been a couple up and out of sight. That result leaves them in fifth, but the teams below them have games in hand and if they win those, the Seasiders will be down to eighth and a further two teams will also be within touching distance, so every point is now vital, especially with games against Brighton, Leicester, Reading and Southampton, all direct promotion rivals up next, so this is as "easy" as it is going to get for some time. Pool were ten matches unbeaten before getting distracted by a FA Cup run, they looked to be back on track, before the County game and will definitely not ease up this time if taking the lead. That is not their normal style anyway, they have scored a league high 31 road goals in the Championship and two or more in 10 of their last 14 away starts, three or more in seven of those. Portsmouth and Millwall, neither of whom are known for their free scoring ways, have already scored three at London Road in 2012 and Blackpool are a tempting 4.50 to follow suit. If Pool play as well as they can, or as they did in the opening 45 minutes in midweek and Posh anything close to how they played against the Lions, this will be over as a contest very early . 1.75 units Blackpool -0.25 ball 2.02 asian line.