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Sky Bet Championship: Jamie O'Hara scores as Blackpool beat Brighton

Jamie O'Hara's first goal for Blackpool earned the Championship's bottom side a 1-0 victory at home to fellow strugglers Brighton.

Blackpool remain nine points adrift of safety - with Brighton currently just above the drop zone themselves on 29 points - but back-to-back wins at Bloomfield Road have given Lee Clark's side renewed hope.

It was former Tottenham midfielder O'Hara who did the damage on 75 minutes with a stunning strike, and it broke Brighton's three-game winning streak away from home.

The visitors started strongly, though, and had the first chance of the game in the eighth minute as Tony McMahon allowed a long ball to slip through his legs, which put Sam Baldock in on goal but Peter Clarke blocked his effort from 12 yards.

Both sides were struggling to put together any meaningful attacks as neither was able to come to grips with an atrocious playing surface at Bloomfield Road.

However, Baldock almost broke through after 24 minutes as he latched on to a ball over the top but Blackpool keeper Ell Parish just grabbed the ball before the Brighton striker could pounce.

Blackpool threatened to take the lead on the half hour when O'Hara's free-kick looked destined to be knocked home by the unmarked Clarke before Brighton keeper David Stockdale claimed the ball just ahead of the defender.

Parish then produced a super save to deny Brighton after 35 minutes as Danny Holla's free-kick was headed on target from six yards by Gordon Greer, only for Seasiders stopper to spring high and tip the ball over the bar.

Brighton again started the second half on the front foot and forced a smart save from Parish as he held Holla's right-footed strike from 20 yards low down to his right after 51 minutes.

Blackpool then had penalty claims turned down after 59 minutes as Clarke's strike from the edge of the area appeared to hit a Brighton arm in the box - but referee Seb Stockbridge waved away the protests.

The impressive Parish was almost caught out in the 68th minute when he delayed his clearance after a back-pass and his kick was nearly charged down by Inigo Calderon.

But that lapse was quickly forgotten when Blackpool took a shock lead with just 15 minutes remaining.

O'Hara, a free transfer in November, curled a sensational left-footed free-kick over Brighton keeper Stockdale and into the back of the net from 35 yards.

Brighton threatened to strike back after 80 minutes as Solly March twisted and turned inside the area but the imperious Clarke cleared before Joe Bennett's cross was headed wide by Leon Best from six yards.

Blackpool came close to doubling their lead after 87 minutes as Mark Waddington slipped in Steven Davies down the left but the forward's left-footed strike from 12 yards was held by Stockdale at his near post.


Headlines for Blackpool this week

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  • Sky Bet Championship: Jamie O'Hara scores as Blackpool beat Brighton


  • Jamie O'Hara's first goal for Blackpool earned the Championship's bottom side a 1-0 victory at home to fellow strugglers Brighton.

  • Sky Bet Championship: Blackpool ready for survival battle after beating Brighton


  • Assistant manager Alan Thompson insists Blackpool are not giving up on their fight against relegation from the Sky Bet Championship after a 1-0 win at home to fellow strugglers Brighton.

  • Transfer news: Blackpool sign Accrington Stanley defender Tom Aldred on loan


  • Blackpool have secured the services of Accrington Stanley defender Tom Aldred on an emergency loan deal.

  • Regional Rumours in the Press: Chelsea eye Varane


  • Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is planning a reunion with Real Madrid's Raphael Varane, while West Brom are running the rule over Diego Forlan.

  • Sky Bet Championship: Wonga not renewing sponsorship deal with Blackpool


  • Wonga have revealed that they will not be renewing their current sponsorship with Blackpool, which expires at the end of the season.

  • Sky Bet Championship: Blackpool terminate Jonathan Legear contract


  • Jonathan Legear has had his contract at Blackpool terminated by mutual consent.

  • Transfer news: Blackpool sign Manchester United midfielder Joe Rothwell on loan


  • Blackpool boss Lee Clark has signed Manchester United midfielder Joe Rothwell on loan until the end of the season.

  • Sky Bet Championship: Odion Ighalo scores four as Watford hammer Blackpool 7-2


  • Odion Ighalo scored four times as Watford produced a remarkable second-half performance to move within four points of the top of the Championship following a 7-2 victory over Blackpool.

  • Regional Rumours in the Press: Koke snubs United


  • Atletico Madrid's Koke has rubbished talk of a move to Man Utd, while Chelsea are set to continue talks with Fiorentina over Juan Cuadrado.

  • Sky Bet Championship: Slavisa Jokanovic keeps clam at interval before Watford fightback


  • Slavisa Jokanovic claimed he said "nothing" at the interval after Watford produced an astonishing second-half display to recover from 2-0 down and beat Blackpool 7-2 at Vicarage Road.

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