Blackpool FC back in the loan market?

Sean Longstaff was an eye-catching loan arrival at Blackpool last season
Sean Longstaff was an eye-catching loan arrival at Blackpool last season
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Blackpool boss Gary Bowyer is keen to stick to last season’s blueprint by making the most of the loan market for 2018-19.

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Bowyer has already dipped his toe into one of his favoured recruitment pools by swooping for non-league defender Michael Nottingham from Salford City and midfielder Harry Pritchard from their National League rivals Maidenhead United.

As well as promising non-league talent, Bowyer is also on the hunt for more loan successes from Championship and Premier League clubs to bolster his Bloomfield Road squad once more.

An established coach prior to getting his first managerial position with Blackburn Rovers, Bowyer has a rich history of developing and nurturing players.

That reputation saw Blackpool trusted with a number of young Championship and Premier League starlets.

Birmingham winger Viv Solomon-Otabor, Middlesbrough midfielder Callum Cooke and Newcastle midfielder Sean Longstaff all made an impact on season-long loan spells, though January arrival Dan Agyei failed to make his mark having joined from Burnley.

Although Bournemouth keeper Ryan Allsop’s underwhelming spell ended in January, his successor from QPR, Joe Lumley, certainly caught the eye with some fine displays.

That form ultimately saw him recalled by the Championship club after Matt Ingram suffered concussion towards the end of April.

However, as Bowyer embarks on what he termed a “massive rebuild” this summer, he will be well aware that loan deals with higher division clubs often have to wait until late in the window as those clubs assess their younger players in pre-season.

Bowyer told The Gazette: “Last year we did very well with our use of the loan market and I’m looking to replicate that this season.”

But with Sunderland, Barnsley and Burton coming down, and Accrington, Wycombe, Luton and Coventry climbing into League One for 2018/19, Bowyer is expecting a tougher battle in the markets and the league table.

He added: “It is a competitive market and it will be even more competitive given the teams that have been promoted and have come down.

“Burton, Barnsley and Sunderland will all have competitive squads.

“Some of the teams that have got promoted have also got big budgets and we will be competing with them.”