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West Hamm hero Jack Collison Photo by: Google Images

Playoffs intriguing as ever - West Ham and Blackpool win first legs

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West Hamm hero Jack Collison Photo by: Google Images

West Ham United boss Sam Allardyce is remaining calm despite the Irons' impressive 2-0 playoff first leg success over Cardiff City.

A brace of Jack Collison goals ensure the Londoners will be protecting a two goal advantage in Monday's second leg at Upton Park.

"We're not going to get carried away. It was a terrific result but there's a long way to go," Allardyce said.

"We need to be as professional on Monday as we were in Cardiff and that should be enough to take us through."

"Two goals is a margin that's difficult for them but they'll be thinking about getting the first goal and whether we'll be nervous and edgy and trying to protect what we've got.

"The last three games we were relying on other people even if we won and it's in our hands again now.

"Whoever wins, takes the trophy and it's not about us playing catch-up on anyone, we're just trying to deliver a performance and we've got to make sure we finish it off.

"In the back of the minds there might be a slight hesitancy to try to protect what we've got but that would be dangerous and we've got to have a positive attitude and try to score the first goal.

"It's my job to start mentally preparing them for the fact that they've got to approach the game as a 0-0 and they've to try to win it."

Blackpool manager Ian Holloway is delighted that Blackpool will bring a one goal lead to St Andrews.

Thomas Ince's shot deflected off Birmingham City defender Curtis Davies before crossing the line and Holloway was encouraged.

"They nearly nicked an equaliser - I'd be fuming if that was the case because, generally, I thought we deserved to just edge it. I'm delighted the goal went in, I think we needed that, but a couple of those others - deary, deary me. I hope we don't rue the day that we missed them.

"Taylor-Fletcher, what a great block. That was unbelievable. That's as good as a goal sometimes. And then Dobbie, it was a wonderful piece of skill from Incey and I'd have had everything I've got on him just rolling it in."

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