Blackpool boss Simon Grayson hails the Seasiders’ squad strength

Blackpool made a number of changes in midweek
Blackpool made a number of changes in midweek
Share this article

Simon Grayson believes building a talented squad of 25 players is what it takes to get out of League One.

The Seasiders’ strength in depth was illustrated on Tuesday night when a much-changed Pool side thrashed Morecambe 5-1 in the EFL Trophy.

Nine changes were made in total from the weekend draw against Portsmouth, but none of the new arrivals looked out of place.

“That’s why I’ve worked with Simon Sadler and the other people behind the scenes to put together the squad we have done,” Grayson said.

“I don’t want 14, 15 or 16 players thinking they’re going to be in the team every week.

“If people are sat on the bench or sat in the stands as they were the other night, they will be thinking ‘yes I need to keep working’.

“If you perform on a matchday the likelihood is you’ll keep the shirt for the next game. If you don’t, you’re looking over your shoulder and you might be out of the team for a while.

“When I spoke to Simon in the summer he asked me how many players I thought we would need to have a realistic chance of being successful.

“I said probably 22 outfield players, plus your goalkeepers, to ensure there is competition in positions to push each other. That’s what we’ve managed to do.

“The other night you saw some good performances from lads who have made those who have started the season in the team realise if they don’t perform week in, week out then there are lads champing at the bit to take the shirt.”

The Seasiders head to St Andrew’s today to take on a Coventry City side that, like Pool, remain unbeaten after six games.

Grayson’s men, meanwhile, will be looking to get back to winning ways after drawing their last three on their spin.

“I think in all those matches we could have won them, drawn or lost as well,” the Pool boss added.

“Rochdale we were the dominant team, Portsmouth was probably the fair result in the three and at Gillingham we showed great character to come back from 2-0 down, yet we could have won that as well.

“But every point is an addition to your tally you need over the course of the season.

“Sometimes you can sacrifice a draw for a defeat and then get a victory to get an extra point.

“But we’re always trying to win those games, we’re not setting up to not get beaten, we want to win as many matches as possible.”