Coventry's woes in front of goal continue. 20 shots. 7 on target. Two goals ruled out for offside and a 92nd minute shot slashed across the goal sum up the current streak for Coventry, but they look good doing it!
With Blackpool playing in a 4-4-2, there was an expectation for Coventry to control the middle, and the game. It certainly played out that way, with Coventry having 68% of possession, and looking very nice on the eye, but the threat from all of that possession was absent.
Though the set up was a 1-4-4-2, Blackpool would attack as a front 4 with Robson and Dougall holding. The result is the Coventry defensive 5 pinned due to Bowler and Yates, and James (in this instance) being able to take a lot of space against the narrow Coventry box midfield. This moment lead to Dale getting a shot on target, and a warning sign.
Coventry have been exposed in the wing areas a lot this season, though many teams have failed to capitalize on the opportunity. Blackpool did so in the 24th minute as they counter Coventry.
It starts with frustration for City. A quick attack is stalled as Gyokeres holds the ball. Maatsen and Kane are beyond him and out of the game. Sheaf and O'Hare are in support, and eventually O'Hare loses the ball.
Coventry work to recover, but just 4 seconds later Bowler plays an excellent ball across the Coventry line, taking 8 players out of the game, and releases Dale to drive into the penalty area. The resulting cross inexplicably bounces past 4 Coventry players to Madine to tap it in.
The Blackpool shape was also consistent for pressing, though Coventry broke it down well. Here you can see the front 4, with Yates having dropped. The Coventry midfield would check in to play between the line. Gyokeres is ready to take off for the ball into the channel and O'Hare, bottom of the screen, can take the space behind Robson and Dougall.
When Coventry did get forward and wide, they had just 7 accurate crosses. Twice the ball was over hit from Kane, but it ended with Maatsen. Notably early in the first half Maatsen flashed a shot/cross across the area, but the accuracy lacked, given the depth of Blackpool and limited options with just Gyokeres to aim at.
Simon Moore presented an alternative for an assist. After claiming a Blackpool corner, he sent Gyokeres on his way and after muscling Sterling off of the ball, Gyokeres slotted it in to avoid half time boo's. 1-1
The second half started the same way for Coventry, with more control, but nothing to show for it.
Breaking through a press and getting into promising positions has become almost 'easy' for Coventry, especially compared to last season, but the hesitation and lack of killer instinct leads to frustration. In this instance, Shipley receives a layoff from Gyokeres. He forces right into O'Hare, but Maatsen is wide open. Would the outcome have been different? Who knows, and decisions are made at game speed.
Then there were 20 minutes of Blackpool controlling the attack. Simon Moore made two excellent saves, including this one from Madine after a long free kick from Grimshaw inside the Blackpool half.
The issue is the anxiety that grows with missed chances and the feeling that the opponent is going to steal it. It creeps in all around. Players behave differently, and here you see 4 Coventry players pressing Bowler. They're disconnected from the rest of the team, which is very uncharacteristic of this team.
As the game closes out, Coventry make changes to try and stifle the Blackpool pressure and regain the momentum.
Bidwell for Kane. Waghorn for Shipley.
Though Waghorn is a nuisance, he and Coventry struggle to get meaningful chances on goal, with Gyokeres blocking a goal-ward header from Hyam and several deflected shots going over the bar, Blackpool were resolute and earned their point. There was one significant moment for Coventry to steal all 3 points after the 90th minute again, though Hamer snatched at a chance we all think we could finish. Undeserving for Hamer who controlled much of the game for Coventry. Though he couldn't resist picking up another yellow. 1 more away from a two game suspension, and maybe a reason why some premier league teams stayed away.
Stats from @whoscored