Neil McDonald is planning to spoil Wigan’s promotion party this weekend and keep Blackpool’s season alive in the process.
Defeat for Pool at Bloomfield Road on Saturday would leave them all but relegated and confirm visitors Wigan’s return to the Championship.
More than 3,000 Latics fans are expected to make the short trip to the Fylde coast for the 12.30pm game on a day Blackpool supporters are set to stage mass protests.
It all makes for a huge afternoon and manager McDonald hopes his side can repeat December’s win at Wigan.
The Pool boss said: “We have a tough game against Wigan but one we are really looking forward to.
“They had a big following last time we played them and we beat them 1-0. Let’s hope for the same result.”
Shrewsbury’s defeat in their game in hand at Walsall on Tuesday means they are still among five teams scrapping to steer clear of the two remaining relegation spots with two matches to play.
Pool’s result will be known before Chesterfield (at home to Bury), Doncaster (away to relegated Crewe) and the Shrews (home to Pool’s final opponents Peterborough) kick-off, while Fleetwood have to wait until Monday to visit promotion-chasing Walsall.
It means victory will lift McDonald’s men out of the drop zone at least for 48 hours and pile pressure on their rivals.
He said: “We have to win two games now. It was important we take seven points out of the last nine and we have one.”
That came from Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Fleetwood, which stopped the rot after back-to-back defeats.
Having slammed his players after the previous weekend’s 3-0 defeat at Rochdale, McDonald was delighted with the response.
He said: “The performance physically and mentally on Saturday was much better.
“The team is trying. Sometimes we aren’t good enough but we are giving everything. We need to carry on as we have been doing.
“The second half at Rochdale was very disappointing but I was really pleased on Saturday.
“I think the changes we made to the side worked and gave us a real brightness.
“It was a great response and I think that gives us confidence. We need to take that into the Wigan game now.”