Why Chris Wilder always knew his Middlesbrough side were in for a tough night’s work against Blackpool

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The patched-up Seasiders took the game to Wilder’s in-form side, who have now won five of their last six games.

Neil Critchley’s men created the better chances and came close to scoring on a number of occasions prior to Shayne Lavery’s late equaliser, hitting the post twice.

But the visitors, who earlier took the lead through Andraz Sporar’s moment of quality, snatched the victory at the death through substitute Duncan Watmore.

“Some wins are different,” Wilder told the Northern Echo.

“I went straight off the pitch at the weekend. I thought it was right for the players to enjoy the win. But tonight was different and, if you want to have a successful second half of the season, you need nights like this.

“I’m not embarrassed to enjoy a win like this. If people talk about us celebrating like we’ve done this or that, well, we’ve won a game in front of 3,000 supporters who have travelled, didn’t know if the game was on or off. Why can’t we celebrate like that?

Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder

Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder

“If you look at the supporters here – 30,000 at the weekend, sell out Huddersfield, sell out Stoke, decent crowd against Bournemouth sell out tonight, sell out Bramall Lane. The connection between the supporters and players is huge.

“We’re going to have nights where we won’t play as well as we’d like, but it’s about getting the result and keeping it going. We did that and we’re delighted the supporters are on their way happy.

“We’ve been in lockdown for however long. This football club is the centre of the town, the area, they love the club. They are getting right behind it.”

Wilder added: “It’s not how we wanted it to be, but as somebody once told me, there’s no pictures on a golf scorecard.

“We found a way to get a result. We weren’t at our best, but I always knew this would be a tough game.

“Blackpool were aggressive, they played forward and asked questions of us defensively. It’s the Championship isn’t it? There are different hurdles to get over.

“We would like to have gotten over it in an easier or better way, but the team showed other characteristics and qualities.”