Wanderers miss out on play-offs
WANDERERS have missed out on the play-offs after an amazing last-day turnaround in the Championship.
Leicester City's victory over Nottingham Forest gives them sixth place on goal difference following a tense 90 minutes in which the Whites came back from 2-0 down to level the game in first-half stoppage time.
Chris Eagles and Craig Davies pulled the score back to 2-2 after Matt Phillips and Ludovic Sylvestre had given the visitors a shock early lead.
Wanderers couldn't maximise their advantage in the second half, and though scores elsewhere kept them in the top six until the final few minutes of the game, a late goal for Leicester ultimately proved the killer blow.
Wanderers looked nervous from the off, and the visitors could have helped themselves when two early chances fell to Matt Phillips, and another cross from the left was stabbed away under considerable pressure by Darren Pratley.
Neil Eardley made another panicky defensive clearance at the other end, shaving his own post to turn away Rob Hall's inswinging free kick.
The game appeared to have settled when Blackpool nudged ahead, Phillips again being afforded too much space on the edge of the box, exchanging passes with Taylor-Fletcher before smashing a shot into the top corner.
Stunned silence then turned into sheer panic when Ludovic Sylvestre made it two, side-footing a neat shot into the bottom corner from Eardley's low ball across the box.
Freedman reacted by hauling off Robert Hall after 36 minutes and sending on Marvin Sordell to form a two-man strike force.
When the board went up to signal three minutes of added time, Wanderers fans willed their side on to snatch a goal.
Not in their wildest dreams could they have imagined that the teams would go in level at the break.
In three breathless minutes, Eagles halved the deficit, exchanging passes with Alonso on the left before smashing home his 12th of the season.
Whites fans were still celebrating when the ball dropped for Craig Davies on the edge of the box and he hit a shot that took a wicked deflection to beat Gilks, sending the Reebok into a mass delirium.
The second half passed by in a blur. With Forest and Leicester level at 2-2, a point was enough. But as that game ebbed and flowed, so did the crowd's emotions.
Wanderers had their chances to take the lead. Sordell couldn't get a clean connection to Chung-Yong Lee's cross from the right, while Alonso's free-kick was pushed away at full stretch by Gilks.
Eagles then played Chung-Yong in on goal with 15 minutes to go, but the Korean could only find the side netting with his shot.
You always wondered whether the Whites would live to regret not taking the advantage – and as Blackpool gained more and more possession towards the end, it was Adam Bogdan's goal that went under siege.
The Hungarian keeper tipped over a late effort from Isiah Osbourne moments before Leicester took the lead at the City Ground.
David Wheater was thrown on as an auxiliary striker to try and claim a winner.
And in the dying seconds, a wave of hope spread round the ground as news of an apparent equaliser surfaced. Unfortunately, they proved unfounded.
Wanderers went on a lap of thanks after the final whistle, with Kevin Davies given a fine send off by the many fans who had stayed behind.