Section: Blackpool

FA Cup: Aston Villa 1-0 Blackpool

Christian Benteke scored two minutes from the end to save Aston Villa from embarrassment against Championship strugglers Blackpool.

The 24-year-old controlled Carlos Sanchez’s pass on his chest and rifled a shot past Joe Lewis from 18 yards.

But an under-par Villa had to dig deep to reach the fourth round against a Blackpool team nine points from safety at the bottom of the Championship.

The visitors were denied a goal when Shay Given saved Ishmael Miller’s shot.

Villa’s only other previous wins at Villa Park this term had been 2-1 league victories over Leicester last month and against Hull in August.

In what has been a tough season, Paul Lambert’s side were knocked out of the Capital One Cup by Leyton Orient at home and the manager warned his players not to make the same mistake against a Blackpool side without an away win all season.

But the Seasiders, who last met Villa in the Premier League in 2010, proved tough opposition and will feel they deserved a replay.

Before Benteke’s late strike – the Belgian’s third goal of the season – the visitors had the best chance to go ahead, but substitute Miller’s rasping drive was tipped over by Given.

Given, 38, was making only his second start of the season with number one Brad Guzan given the day off – one of five changes made by Lambert.

The clubs last met in the FA Cup in January 1938, when Villa ran out 4-0 winners.

It was never going to be a goal fest this time with neither side showing much cutting edge.

Indeed Villa were on course for a third successive goalless draw at Villa Park – after sharing the points with Sunderland and Crystal Palace over the festive period – until Benteke’s moment of magic.

While the result will be a relief for Lambert, it means more misery for Lee Clark, who took over at Blackpool in October but has guided them to only one win in 11 outings.

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Championship: Blackpool 1-1 Rotherham

Substitute Dom Telford scored an equaliser on his home debut to give bottom Championship club Blackpool a point at home to Rotherham.

Lee Clark’s side needed a Joe Lewis penalty save from Tom Lawrence to keep them level at half-time.

They looked set for a 15th league defeat of the season when Emmanuel Ledesma scored in the 57th minute.

But 18-year-old Telford nudged in his first senior goal from close range with six minutes left.

But despite the draw, the Seasiders are nine points adrift of safety and look destined for the drop to League One.

Blackpool, who have managed two league wins all season, were outclassed in the opening 45 minutes, with keeper Lewis pushing an early free-kick around the post from Ledesma – on loan from Middlesbrough – then diving to deny Lawrence.

The keeper then palmed away a curling shot from Lee Frecklington before getting down low to his left to save a 17th-minute penalty from Leicester loanee Lawrence, who had been tripped in the box by Seasiders captain Tony McMahon.

Former Aston Villa striker Jordan Bowery hit the post for Rotherham towards the end of the first half, with Lewis parrying Richard Smallwood’s follow-up.

Nathan Delfouneso had a goal ruled out for offside early in the second half for a much-improved Blackpool.

The home side hit the post themselves through Andrea Orlandi, who had waltzed past three defenders on a run in to the penalty area before shooting.

Ledesma picked up his first Rotherham goal shortly afterwards, twisting and turning on the edge of the Blackpool box before slotting the ball into the bottom corner.

But a long ball forward by Lewis caused mayhem in the Rotherham defence and Telford prodded in – leaving Steve Evans’ side six points above the relegation zone.

Read more at BBC Sport