Blackpool boss Michael Appleton makes Sonny Carey claim after former Norwich City youngster stars against Hull City

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Michael Appleton believes Blackpool’s Sonny Carey has become a “different player” in recent games.
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Michael Appleton addresses Blackpool's seven-game winless run ahead of Sheffield...

The midfielder, still only aged 21, has enjoyed a run of starts in the Blackpool side both prior to the break and after it.

His form has certainly benefited, culminating in the former Kings Lynn Town man bagging his first goal of the season in the 1-1 draw against Hull City on Boxing Day.

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It was an emphatic finish from Carey, the midfielder lashing home high into the roof of the net from the edge of the box after the Seasiders had pressed to win the ball back high up the pitch.

“It was a great goal and it was deserved from him,” Appleton said.

“I think prior to the break and since the break we’ve seen a different player. He’s been more aggressive, less passive when the opposition have the ball, he’s started leaning on people and winning the ball high up.

“I thought against Hull him and Charlie (Patino), for two lads who are 19 and 21, in the middle of the park were outstanding and deserve a lot of credit.”

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Carey celebrates after giving Blackpool the lead against Hull on Boxing DayCarey celebrates after giving Blackpool the lead against Hull on Boxing Day
Carey celebrates after giving Blackpool the lead against Hull on Boxing Day

Another man who has stepped up his game in recent weeks is Ian Poveda, who was rewarded for his impressive displays off the bench with a start against Hull.

The winger looked full of confidence but had to be sacrificed in the second-half when the Seasiders were reduced to 10 men following Jordan Thorniley’s red card.

While Appleton is delighted with Poveda’s return to form, he says it’s something he needs to maintain for a longer period of time.

“On his day he’s a matchwinner, you just have to get him in a good head space and he seems that way at the minute,” he said of the Leeds United loanee.

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“He’s had an impact coming off the bench in the last two fixtures, he’s done his bit against Hull and once the sending off happened it was difficult to keep him on the pitch given who we were up against when we needed to bring an extra defender on.

“He’s played his part and he’ll play his part again.”