Barry Ferguson will accept nothing less than a huge reaction from his players in tonight’s home clash with Derby County (8pm).
After Saturday’s 2-1 defeat against bottom of the table Yeovil, Pool welcome Steve McClaren’s high-flying Rams to Bloomfield Road desperate to get back to winning ways.
The Seasiders are now just two places and six points above the Championship drop zone, with pressure starting to grow.
And boss Ferguson has sent out a message to his players that he’ll accept nothing but 100 per cent.
“We have to go out tonight and prove a point to the fans,” he said.
“The boys need to get out there and show how desperate they are to win.
“They need to take the game by the scruff of the neck. I want them to win every header, every tackle and their own battle.
“Saturday was a big disappointment for myself, the players and the fans. I need to see a reaction tonight.
“I know we all want them to do it for me and for Blackpool, but more importantly they need to do it for themselves. They need to show pride. We need to have a right good go.”
Saturday saw Ferguson criticise his squad for only the second time since taking over from Paul Ince in January.
But unlike the inquest which followed the hammering at Watford last month, Ferguson says the mood was calm when the squad reported to training yesterday.
He explained: “I had a quick chat with them on Monday morning. I told them Yeovil was over and done with and we start again against Derby.
“That’s the only way we can go about it. What happened on Saturday is done.
“We all had a horrible weekend but we need to get on with it now.
“We have six games to play, 18 points to play for and it’s totally in our hands.
“One thing is for sure – these boys won’t go down without a fight.
“I know them inside and out and they are hurting badly, and so am I and all my staff. The only way we can solve that is by getting a win against Derby.”
The fourth-placed Rams had a miserable weekend themselves, suffering a shock defeat to Middlesbrough.
But when asked about tonight’s opponents, Ferguson said: “In all honesty the only thing I care about is Blackpool. Derby are a very good side but whatever they do is up to them.
“I’m more concerned about what we do. That performance just wasn’t the boys I know, especially in the first half.
“We can’t dwell on it and we haven’t got time to. We have to move forward now.”