Football can be cruel sometimes - just ask Barnsley boss Dave Flitcroft.
His side grafted their socks off for more than 90 minutes by the seaside - and created some great chances,
But the Reds were sunk four minutes into stoppage time by a freak goal which Wimbledon’s 1990s ‘Crazy Gang’ would have been proud of.
The Reds failed to score again, but were worthy of returning back to South Yorkshire with a point.
That was until the 94th minute. A harmless-looking throw-in was awarded to the home side out on the left wing.
Young full-back Jack Robinson grabbed the ball, flung it towards the Reds’ box and, as it missed Jean Yves M’Voto, it flicked off Scott Golbourne’s head, over keeper Luke Steele, and into the net at the far post despite two frantic attempts on the goalline from David Perkins to keep it out.
Seasiders boss Paul Ince felt his side deserved to win, though many probably didn’t, leaving Flitcroft to reflect on a day of acute frustration.
After overseeing a third game without a goal this term, Flitcroft said: “We created a few chances, but overall we’re not as slick this season as we were towards the end of last, and we’re definitely not being clinical enough.
“It’s still a horrible way to lose, though. I feel sick.
“I thought we’d defended their set-pieces really well up until the goal, but maybe we need that bit of composure in there.
“We’re not as composed on the ball this season for some reason, and the creativity isn’t quite there, so that’s something we’ll have to work on come Monday morning.
“It’s been a bit untidy and everyone was really raw after the game, but we’ll just remain positive - as we always are - and I’ll find the answers.”
Flitcroft made three changes to the side that only just scraped past Scunthorpe on penalties during the week in the Capital One Cup, with Scott Wiseman, young Paul Digby and the lively Tomasz Cywka all being given the nod against a Blackpool side who were missing their talisman, Tom Ince, through suspension.
There was a very high-tempo start to the game, with both sides exchanging very presentable chances in the opening five minutes.
Isaiah Osbourne went close for the hosts, but within 60 seconds Perkins combined expertly with Chris O’Grady before flashing a smart half-volley inches over the crossbar. O’Grady then drove a shot wide as the Reds looked to gain a foothold early in the game, only for the Seasiders to rally and twice go close to breaking the deadlock through former Rochdale wide-man Bobby Grant.
Cywka was making the most of his recall in the first half. He was tormenting Blackpool out on the left and in the 33rd minute he turned Kirk Broadfoot inside out before driving a shot into the side-netting.
Blackpool’s best chance of the opening 90 minutes came shortly before half-time. This time Broadfoot was in the right place to flick the ball into Michael Chopra’s path, but the fomer Barnsley, Newcastle and Cardiff City hitman fired wide when through on goal.
The second half was more a battle as both sides lacked spark in the final third.
O’Grady planted a free header over the top from a peach of a cross from Golbourne, while Cywka drilled wide.
Nathan Eccleston looked a handful for the hosts when he came on and he tested Steele with a sharp shot, but the substitute was soon to be substituted thanks to an unfortunate hamstring tear.
Reds sub Jason Scotland forced a decent save out of the alert Matt Gilks with 10 minutes to go, but after that both sides appeared content to settle for a point apiece.
That was until Robinson intervened with his late, mega throw-in which zipped into the Barnsley penalty box.
It was harsh on the Reds and their terrific travelling army of fans, but they will just have to dust themselves and go again against a Charlton side who smashed six past them in April.