BLACKPOOL 1-2 BURTON ALBIONNasser El Khayati grabbed a second half brace as the Brewers came from behind at Blackpool to record their first away victory in League One. The enigmatic Dutchman had his shooting boots on him as he calmly equalised Jack Redshaw's opener with a precise finish on 58 minutes after a slip by Emmerson Boyce but he saved the best til five minutes from time when he rattled home a stunning 25 yard free kick to seal an important three points.
The win certainly banished the disappointment of Saturday's defeat at Barnsley but Albion were certainly made to work for the points after a vibrant spell for the hosts midway through the first half had seen former Morecambe man Redshaw coolly finish inside the six yard box. The Brewers looked a little disjointed in the first half but were a totally different proposition in the second period as Albion threw everything they had at Neil McDonald's men and ultimately went back with the three points after a gritty and determined second half fightback.
Keen to keep his squad fresh Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink changed his team and formation for the Brewers first ever visit to Bloomfield Road. It was a 4-4-2 for the visit to Blackpool FC with Timmy Thiele partnered for the first time with Stuart Beavon in attack. The German earning a full Football League debut. The back five unit remained the same as at Barnsley, the other change seeing Calum Butcher come in for Tom Naylor in the centre of midfield, Lucas Akins making way for the extra striker with Mark Duffy moving out to the right wing. New signing Aurelien Joachim returned to the bench as Callum Reilly dropped out of the matchday squad.
Burton certainly looked the more purposeful side in the opening exchanges with a strong blustery wind blowing around the seaside stadium. From an early corner Nasser El Khayati had nerves jangling in the home defence with a rasping drive that flew not far over the bar.
Another chance came Albion's way on 11 minutes with El Khayati prominent once more. Having turned former Premiership defender Emmerson Boyce inside out he carved out a chance for Calum Butcher whose shot was blocked. The ball came back out nicely for Mark Duffy who had come inside but his curling effort failed to trouble Blackpool keeper Kyle Letheren.
Henry Cameron tried to get things going for the Seasiders with a strong run across the pitch on 13 minutes but under pressure from the Albion midfield he fired over.
Brad Potts was considerably closer a minute later when Cameron picked him out inside the box after good work from Mark Cullen dropping deep. The former Carlisle man had to take it first time to make sure he got his shot away and was unlucky to see it curl over the bar from 12 yards.
Damien McCrory had to make a vital block and clearance on 18 minutes when winger Bright Osayi-Samuel got away down the left and pulled the ball back for former Morecambe striker Jack Redshaw. There was nothing wrong with the striker's effort but Albion were grateful to their ever reliable left back for being in the right place to clear the danger.
The home side were certainly buoyed by those chances and seemed to step up their efforts after a somewhat tame start to the game and they grabbed the lead on 25 minutes. Cullen played in Cameron down the right and he got to the bye line before pulling the ball back to REDSHAW for a simple finish giving McLaughlin no chance.
Albion were briefly at sixes and sevens as Blackpool rampaged forwards again Potts this time forcing a good save from McLaughlin.
Burton seemed to weather the worst of what Blackpool could throw at them and Thiele tested Letheren with a shot from the edge of the box on 35 minutes. The shot certainly had the power but was straight at the Tangerine's keeper.
Cullen was proving to be a real threat for the hosts was his pacy and powerful runs and he was able to charge to the edge of the box before driving a low shot straight at McLaughlin. Albion's response was swift with a raking ball from Beavon out to El Khayati opening up the Blackpool defence. Picking out at early cross he curled the ball in towards Thiele was lunged in at the far post but was just unable to make contact to divert the ball in.
The half ended with concerns over the fitness of Beavon who went down heavily on the edge of the area just before the break. The striker was helped off by physio Nick Fenton but referee Geoff Eltringham blew for half time before he could return to the action.
Half time: Blackpool 1-0 Burton Albion
Fortunately Beavon was ok to continue after the break and he had the first chance as well latching onto a header from Thiele but poking his shot at full stretch straight at Letheren.
Thiele then had a chance of his own running onto a through ball from Duffy but he scuffed his shot to the near post making it too easy for the keeper.
Beavon again nipped in and was close to getting his shot away until a last ditch intervention from Clark Robertson denied him the chance to test Letheren once more with less than five minutes of the second half gone.
It was all much brighter stuff from the men in yellow as they continued to pressure the home goal. Duffy was looking lively in the wider winger's role and his teasing crosses were certainly testing the Blackpool back line. Beavon seemed to be nudged to the ground as he tried to turn in the box but the referee was satisfied that there was insufficient in it to award the penalty.
The Brewers only had to wait for the 58th minute for the equaliser as they finally made their pressure pay. Damien McCrory's pressure down the left enabled EL KHAYATI to nick possession away from the Seasiders and when Boyce slipped on the edge of the box there was plenty of room for the Dutchman to exploit and ruthlessly find the bottom corner of the net.
Blackpool quickly made two substitutions to try and turn things back in their favour. Charles Dunne replaced Osayi-Samuel to try and shore things up on the left and he was quickly followed by Connor Oliver coming on for Jim McAlister.
Duffy, again drifting inside from his right wing let fly on his left foot but his shot flew over.
Thiele, always looking for the chance to get a shot away, did so again on 68 minutes pulling out to the edge of the penalty area before driving a low effort to the near post. It was the last effort for the lively looking German as he was replaced with 20 minutes to go by Joachim.
A neatly worked corner routine almost provided McCrory with his first goal of the campaign on 71 minutes. Duffy played it short to El Khayati and nobody tracked the run of Albion's left back as he burst into the area but dragged his shot wide of the upright.
Beavon drilled a low shot wide on 74 minutes after a neat ball in from Albion's substitute found him well on the edge of the box.
Albion's second change saw Tom Naylor replace Calum Butcher on 77 minutes in the hope that the fresh legs of the former Derby man might just pay dividends in that midfield area.
Burton were certainly piling on the pressure and Beavon forced a decent save from Letheren latching onto Duffy's through ball on 81 minutes.
Blackpool substitute Dunne threatened to undo all of Albion's good work with a burst into the area moments later but fortunately for Albion McLaughlin had his near post well protected as the former Wycombe man tried to blast the ball in.
With five minutes to go Albion's mercurial Dutchman did the trick again this time from a free kick. Beavon went on another run towards the Blackpool box and was bundled over 25 yards out. Any one of three Burton men fancied the free kick but it was EL KHAYATI who left Letheren rooted to the spot as he perfectly picked out the top corner of the net. A stunning effort worthy of securing three points.
Beavon was given a tremendous reception from the travelling Brewers fans as he was replaced on 88 minutes with Anthony O'Connor brought on to try and fill the gaps and make sure Blackpool could not find a route back into it.
The Seasiders wretched run of winless games during 2015 was set to continue and there was no way back for them as Albion comfortably saw out the remainder of the game to return to winning ways ahead of the visit of Peterborough United on Saturday.