Stephen Crainey's Anfield century


Stephen Crainey

Stephen Crainey takes the honours this weekend as the top former bhoy.

Blackpool’s 2-1 win at Anfield will undoubtedly trigger Liverpool in crisis headlines, possibly even a broke crest or two but it shouldn’t take anything away from Blackpool’s performance.

Ian Holloway’s Worzel accent and passion for the game stands out like a sore thumb in the bland characterless world of the Premiership but seven games into the season his side are on course for survival.

Not many teams would survive a schedule that includes trips to Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool but the Seasiders claimed their prize scalp with a 2-1 win at the former cauldron that is Anfield.

Crainey was on the substitutes bench in March 2003 when Martin O’Neill’s side pulled off a famous win to dump Liverpool out of the UEFA Cup and helped turn the fantasy of a trip to Seville into reality.

This afternoon he made his 100th league appearance for Blackpool in a never to be forgotten match that ended with large sections of the Liverpool support chanting for Kenny Dalglish to take charge.

Holloway remained calm and composed after the match and refused to go over the top about his side’s win.

The Blackpool boss said: “When the fans were singing You’ll Never Walk Alone – it’s my dad’s favourite song but he’s no longer with me – I was singing myself and it was a bit emotional.

“This is not far off the home of football – these supporters have seen some of the best football over the years and in my era as a player there was no better team in the world.

“The boys made me so proud and for that set of supporters to clap us off that is all I wanted – that was what my dream was last night. This is a fantastic moment for Blackpool.”

Next up for the seasiders is Manchester City at home.

Over in Russia Aiden McGeady’s Spartak Moscow survived Ryder Cup type weather conditions to beat Anzhi Makhachkala 1-0 thanks to a a first half goal from Alexandr Sheshukov which lifts them up into fourth place but still trailing leaders Zenit St Petersburg by 17 points.

With Russia travelling to meet Ireland in Dublin on Friday McGeady played for the full 90 minutes before meeting up for international duty.

In Germany Morten Rasmussen was on the bench for Mainz05 after missing out in the last two matches. Mains maintained their 100% record with a 4-2 win over Hoffenheim to stay on top of the Bundesliga, three points clear of Borussia Dortmund.

Closer to home Milan Misun was missing from the Dundee team that beat Morton, featuring Sean Fitzharris, 2-1 at home.

With administration again staring the club in the face following their most recent financial crisis only 4,068 fans bothered to turn up at Dens Park.

Mark Millar scored his first goals for Falkirk in their 5-1 win over Donald Findlay’s Cowdenbeath with Millar’s second goal coming from the penalty spot. Jason Marr was also in Steven Pressley’s side.

Also in Division One Ryan Conroy was in the Queen of the South side that won 2-0 at home to Dunfermline.

In the SPL Paul McGowan failed to get on the scoresheet as St Mirren remained in bottom place after losing 3-1 at Motherwell.

Down south Darren O’Dea was missing from the Ipswich side that beat Leeds 2-1 at Portman Road with Roy Keane’s side occupying a play-off spot alongside Paul Lambert’s Norwich and Malky Mackay’s Watford who both won away from home.

Dropping down into League One Huddersfield, featuring Graham Carey, los 1-0 at home to Bristol Rovers courtesy of a last minute goal from Will Hoskins whilst Josh Thompson’s Rochdale lost 1-0 away to Rochdale but remain in fifth place.

The Swindon bhoys didn’t have much success either with Scott Cuthbert, Paul Caddis and Simon Ferry all playing in the 1-0 defeat at Dagenham and Redbridge.

Finally Lincoln City, without Chris Sutton but featuring Ben Hutchinson lost 1-0 at Southend.

Testimonial arranged for John Kennedy

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