Blackpool 4-2 Preston: Yates scores twice to seal thrilling derby win
Blackpool stunned the Championship’s meanest defence with a four-goal show to beat Preston 4-2 in a firecracker Lancashire derby at Bloomfield Road.
CJ Hamilton sealed the win with the last kick of the game by placing the ball into an open goal from 45 yards.
Jerry Yates had opened the scoring when he nodded in Blackpool’s first attempt on target after 30 minutes but Preston hit back quickly when Ben Whiteman scored from the penalty spot seven minutes before the break.
And Ryan Lowe's team appeared poised to turn the game on its head when they applied sustained pressure following the restart.
Charlie Patino altered the narrative, however, arrowing into the bottom corner after fine approach play from Sonny Carey.
Patino, the teenage midfielder on loan from Arsenal, stood up a cross for Yates to head his second of the afternoon – and eighth Championship goal this term – to put clear daylight between the teams with nine minutes remaining.
Preston refused to give up the ghost and substitute Robbie Brady’s delivery caused a commotion in the Blackpool box, eventually forcing Callum Connolly to turn into his own net on 89 minutes.
The noisy locals collectively held their breath when five added minutes were signalled.
But Blackpool resisted late pressure and ultimately broke for Hamilton to have the final say on a dramatic contest.
Preston started the match brightly and Chris Maxwell produced smart stops from Brad Potts and Ben Woodburn.
It was Blackpool who made the breakthrough, however. Preston's concentration was possibly disturbed by a delay for the injured Liam Bridcutt to make way for Carey.
When play restarted with a Blackpool free-kick on the right, Kenny Dougall flighted the ball to the far post. Gary Madine won the initial header, directing the ball across goal for Yates to apply a cute finish.
Preston immediately responded. Former Lillywhites keeper Maxwell shovelled out a long ranger from Whiteman and denied Emil Riis at close quarter, but was helpless after Marvin Ekpiteta’s nibble at Riis's heels in the box.
Whiteman stroked the penalty down the middle and looked to have set the platform for a turnaround.
Preston flew out the traps after the restart.
Ekpiteta blocked a Riis shot and the same defender cleared after Whiteman's free-kick ricocheted dangerously in front of goal.
But Patino collected a pass from Carey to rifle in against the run of play and lift the roof off Bloomfield Road.
Yates looked to have sealed the victory before ill-fortune befell Connolly.
But Hamilton wrapped up a memorable success for Blackpool. Preston, meanwhile, will be left wondering how a defence breached only 10 times in 16 games prior to this contest, shipped four goals on a miserable afternoon for Ryan Lowe's side.