Fans’ panel: Time to pull together

DJ Campbell tries to go round Stoke captain Ryan Shawcross

DJ Campbell tries to go round Stoke captain Ryan Shawcross

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DJ Campbell and co. could not find a way through a solid Stoke defence but still the trapdoor hasn’t burst open beneath the Seasiders’ feet.

And our fans’ panel are bracing themselves for a battle to the wire. Whether you agree with their views or not, drop us a line at tango@ blackpoolgazette.co.uk or leave your comments below.

PHIL CORBETT

AT the full-time whistle I was a little disappointed. This season is so tight to call and I’m unsure whether this is another point towards safety or a missed opportunity.

On reflection, I have to come down on the side of a point gained, as Stoke had clear chances to win and we struggled to make a chance all afternoon, with possibly our best effort being a Southern shot partially blocked by DJ Campbell.

Stoke will put any side under pressure, so at least we can look back at a clean sheet at home with a sense of achievement. Such a pity that our record of scoring in every home game went in the same fixture.

The bottom line is that we’ve got into May and are still in there fighting for survival, having averaged a point a game.

A few weeks ago, the speculation was that well over 40 points would be needed for survival. I am now wondering if a win and a draw could be enough, especially as our goals scored could count in our favour. With other teams at the bottom to play each other, they can’t all pick up points.

It’s down to the team and fans to all pull together and get the results we need – plenty of Spurs tickets still available. If you’re disappointed at missing out on the trip to Old Trafford, then go to Spurs instead and roar on the lads. Believe.

PETER GILLATT

The goalless draw against a handy Stoke side could prove to be a very valuable point, not that Pool deserved anything more.

And after all the weekend’s other games involving our relegation rivals, things could so easily have been so much worse for the Seasiders. To be just above the relegation zone with just three games remaining is very heartening.

All we need is to do as well as the teams below us in the remaining games and we could be safe.

Ian Evatt, one of our unsung heroes this season, shone so brightly against Stoke on Saturday.

He stood out, as did the entire defence, in a truly immense performance against such a physical team.

So frustrating, then, that our forwards were unable to find the net. If only all three areas of the team fired on full cylinders at the same time, we would have a great fighting chance of surprising a few people like we did earlier in the season.

Having been a small part of the team that raised funds for the Jimmy Armfield statue, my congratulations to all those whose efforts against all the odds resulted in Sunday’s unveiling of a permanent reminder of a true Blackpool legend.

The gala dinner in his honour that followed was a fitting tribute to the man. And speaking as a supporter who was lucky enough to see him play in the top flight, I couldn’t have felt more proud.

DAVE WHITE

IT is ironic that when we finally manage to keep a clean sheet at home we also fail to score ourselves. However, having scored at least once in each of the previous 41 home matches we can justifiably applaud the attacking football which has taken us where we are today.

Stoke played exactly like many of us expected them to – they have nothing to go for in the league, have a massive game a week on Saturday and strolled through the match.

For the second time this season we were able to deal with Rory Delap’s long throws with ease.

Regardless, Stoke still posed a fair threat, and had this point come at any other time in the season we’d all look upon it as an excellent result.

As it is, the bottom of the league continues to get tighter, and being unable to turn that point into three might give us problems on the final day.

Although our performances have improved considerably over the last two matches, and there is still the belief in the camp that we will survive, it’s unbelievably frustrating that our four home games in a row have yielded just two points – not the return any of us was looking for.

We’re heading towards the endgame now, and in all honesty nobody has a clue how many points or what goal difference will be required in order to avoid an immediate return to the Championship.

Match of the Day seem to think that 39 will be enough for Blackburn, so theoretically it should also be enough for us.

I expect each of the bottom four teams will win at least one more game, meaning it will come down to what each team does in the others.

FIONA MARTIN

Earlier in the season, a home point against Stoke would have been considered a good result, but at this stage we would have liked all three.

It was disappointing that we couldn’t score – it doesn’t happy very often and it’s been a long time coming at home. The front three struggled to find a way through a resilient Stoke defence. They haven’t had the success they’ve had by not being hard to beat, and that showed as they marshalled DJ Campbell well.

Frustrating as it was not to score, massive credit needs to go to the defence for the clean sheet. I always believed we would get one at home and it is a bit of a monkey off our backs – however late in the season it’s come.

Credit has to go to Ian Evatt, who was absolutely magnificent and put in possibly one of the best individual displays of the season.

I don’t think it’s any coincidence that a more solid-looking defence comes with the return of Keith Southern.

I think Keith needed a couple of games to get into his game, but he’s had them now and he remains the best foil for Adam and Vaughan.

We’re still outside the bottom three with three games to go, which on its own is a magnificent achievement.

This team has come so far this season but there is still a way to go.

Regardless of who our opponents are, there are still nine points to play for. We go to Spurs looking confident.

I still believe we can stay up because Blackpool continue to surprise me and make me proud.

TOM WILSON

AFTER scoring in every home game this season, we don’t get a goal when we need it the most... OUTRAGEOUS BEHAVIOUR!

For once we lacked any kind of punch in the final third to put Stoke’s defence under real pressure as they comfortably dealt with everything we threw at them.

Charlie Adam strangely seemed a shadow of his former self with numerous misplaced passes. His performances will have to pick up if we’re to stand a chance of staying up.

On the plus side, at least we did the unthinkable and kept a clean sheet. It never seemed like it was going to ever pass the Daz doorstep challenge.

It was only made possible, though, by Kenwyne Jones producing the miss of the season. It wouldn’t be harsh to say that my nan could have buried that one.

If that’s the turning point of our season, then I’m gonna start my own appreciation society for him.

Holloway could change wingers for Saturday, with Puncheon and Varney possibly coming into the fold to freshen things up as GTF and Phillips didn’t have much of an impact.

Kornilenko did well when he came on and unsettled Stoke with his physical presence, but I doubt he’ll be thrown in. Picking up points at White Hart Lane or Old Trafford is an ask of epic proportions but it’s imperative, along with beating Bolton in our last home fixture.

Before Christmas it seemed like we would be safe and sound, but now it’s going well and truly down to the wire.

MICHAEL MORRISON

IF you believe in a higher power, you’d best start praying. If you’re superstitious, avoid black cats and ladders and keep every digit crossed. We need it.

Something has changed since the turn of the year. We’ve taken two points from our last three matches, having beaten the same three teams away.

Have Holloway’s tactics of attack, attack, attack, simply been found out or is there something disrupting the team spirit? A wantaway midfielder, perhaps?

Where some people have seen me as a pessimistic, I’ve seen myself as a realist. With the exception of one or two, we’re a team of Championship players brought in on the (relative) cheap.

When the season started, we caught teams out with our brave, battling displays, but as the season has worn on team have figured out how to counter our game plan – by attacking.

I’m not belittling Blackpool or our players, but we’ve just lacked that special something Premier League teams need. We’ve had plenty of possession, including against Stoke, but have still lost and drawn games we needed to win.

It’s not over yet. We should beat Bolton and in 90 minutes we can always beat Spurs and United. But, in the end, if we go down we just need to accept that we just weren’t good enough for the dizzy heights of the top flight.

If we don’t, we can thank whatever it is we believe in for the miracle given to us.