DCSIMG

It's Make Or Break Time

FOUR games to make the season!

That's the battlecry from Simon Grayson as the Seasiders headed into today's clash with Northampton seeking a result that could virtually guarantee a play-off spot.

Three wins on the bounce have propelled Pool into fourth place and a chance of automatic promotion – albeit relying heavily on Bristol City and Nottingham Forest to drop points.

However, both City and Forest haven't registered a win in their last three games – scoring only three goals between them.

And compared to Blackpool's record of three wins and seven goals, it's fair to say that two of the league's 'big guns' are feeling the heat.

But first Grayson wants to ensure his team make the top six. One more win is likely to be sufficient – though the manager has warned his team that they cannot afford to be complacent.

"The next few games are going to be tough and if anyone thinks that our season will peter out and we'll just automatically finish in the play-offs then they are wrong," said the manager.

"If you switch your mind off at any time and don't do the work that you have been, then you can lose it and might fall out of the top six altogether, despite our strong position now."

Blackpool have hit top form again following a mini-slump in February and, if the play-offs are the club's destiny, then going into them with a team oozing confidence could be the defining factor – as Grayson knows from past experience.

"As a player going into the play-offs with Leicester we always made it with a late run and got to the final every time," he said. "Sometimes teams settled in the top six for a long while don't do so well – hopefully that will be the case this time.

"I think the fact that we're winning and full of confidence will play a big part in the play-offs.

"If Carlisle or Swansea get in then they will think they have got a great chance too because of the momentum they've got at the minute.

"But if we do get into the play-offs then we will certainly go in with a lot of confidence."

n TODAY'S clash is NOT likely to be Joe Hart's last appearance in a Pool jersey.

Lewis Edge has been diagnosed as suffering from ligament damage and may be out for another 10 days.

With Paul Rachubka (hamstring) and Rhys Evans (hernia) definitely out for the foreseeable, it would enable Pool to re-sign 20-year-old Manchester City keeper Hart for a further week – allowing him to play at Cheltenham.

"Lewis has had a scan on his finger and it is badly bruised with some ligament damage which could keep him out for another week or 10 days," said Grayson.

"We're not sure for definite but after this weekend all three will again have to be analysed by an independent doctor to see if they are fit or not.

"If they are all unfit again then hopefully we can sign Joe for another week."

 
 
 

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