League One round-up: Ruthless Blackpool hailed but frustration grows at Sunderland ahead of Portsmouth visit

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Simon Grayson hailed his ‘ruthless’ Blackpool players as the Seasiders maintained their 100-per-cent winning start to the season.

Three first-half goals saw the Tangerines cruise to a 3-1 victory at winless Southend, despite James Husband being sent off on the hour mark.

They sit top of the table on goal difference ahead of Lincoln, who beat Rotherham 2-0 at the New York Stadium, and Fleetwood – 2-1 winners at home to AFC Wimbledon.

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Blackpool boss Simon Grayson said his troops did well to take the game away from Southend, before a late consolation goal for the hosts.

Sunderland boss Jack Ross Picture by Frank ReidSunderland boss Jack Ross Picture by Frank Reid
Sunderland boss Jack Ross Picture by Frank Reid

‘I thought the players played really well again. I thought we dominated the first-half and were ruthless when we got the opportunities,’ he said.

‘Being 3-0 up at half-time was a good position, but you still know that anything can happen.

‘We still had some opportunities to go to 4-0 and I think that would have really killed the game off.’

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Sunderland warmed up for their visit of Pompey next Saturday with a 1-1 draw at Ipswich.

Lynden’s Gooch’s 64th-minute effort cancelled out Luke Garbutt’s 15th-minute opener as the Black Cats made it two draws from two this season.

However, manager Jack Ross was far from happy with what he saw from his side.

He told the Sunderland Echo: ‘The first half was a long way short of where we need to be, a long way short of what we need to do as a team and a long way short of what I would put my name to.

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‘Ultimately, it always comes back to me. There was a frank discussion at half-time because we were a goal behind to a team that did the fundamentals a lot better than us.

‘They were aggressive, competitive, physical. That gave them a platform to go and create and we were deservedly behind.

‘The second half was a huge difference, it emphasises that you need to do the basics to show the quality you have.’

Darren Ferguson insisted he remains positive despite big-spending Peterborough suffering a 1-0 defeat at Oxford.

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The loss at the Kassam Stadium was The Posh’s second of the season, leaving them fourth from bottom in the table.

Ferguson told the Peterborough Telegraph his players need to waken up if they are to rectify their early-season problems.

He said: ‘The penny has to drop. We can’t start matches like we have in the first two games and expect to win.

‘We left ourselves a mountain to climb for the second match in a row.

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‘I will remain positive though. There was enough in the second-half display to give me confidence going forward.’

Other results: Bolton 0-0 Coventry, Bristol Rovers 0-0 Wycombe, Gillingham 1-2 Burton, MK Dons 1-0 Shrewsbury, Rochdale 1-1 Doncaster Rovers.

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