Blackpool have not completed the job yet warns boss Neil Critchley

Neil Critchley has warned his Blackpool players the job is not done yet.

Thursday, 29th April 2021, 8:00 am

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It comes after the Seasiders took a giant step towards confirming their place in the League One play-offs with a magnificent 1-0 win away to top-six rivals Sunderland on Tuesday.

It saw Critchley’s men complete a first league double over the Black Cats in 63 years and, more importantly, got them back to winning ways after back-to-back defeats to Rochdale and Shrewsbury Town.

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Neil Critchley celebrates with his Blackpool players after the victory at Sunderland

The midweek triumph leaves Blackpool in fifth place, three points ahead of seventh-placed Oxford with a game in hand.

The Seasiders are in a positive place with three games to play. Next up is Saturday’s final away fixture at Northampton Town, who will be relegated if they lose, but Critchley insists there’s still a job to be done.

Pool’s head coach told The Gazette: “We don’t set targets – the target is simply the next game.

“We just prepare and think about the plan and how we’re going to beat this team. We don’t look ahead. It’s quite simple and quite boring but it’s what we do.

“The job is not done and hopefully we can make it 21 wins at Northampton.”

Blackpool were also handed a major boost when two of Tuesday’s results involving play-off rivals went their way. Charlton Athletic and Portsmouth were both leading deep into stoppage-time only to be pegged back in the final seconds.

The Addicks were held 2-2 by Critchley’s former club Crewe Alexandra, whose goals came from academy product Owen Dale, while John Marquis’ own goal forced Pompey to settle for a 3-3 draw with Accrington Stanley.

Critchley added: “I’m pleased for Crewe, particularly for the goalscorer because I coached him when he was seven.

“So I’m delighted for him and for Crewe because they’ve done us a favour.

“Accrington as well – that just typifies John Coleman, his club and his team. That’s the division, though – there are twists and turns, ups and downs, it’s just unbelievable.

“What a great night. What an experience to come to this stadium and win – fantastic, absolutely brilliant.”

Pool beat Sunderland 1-0 for the second time in 10 days and Critchley added: “For them not to score in 180 minutes of football against us is some achievement.

“Sunderland are well capable of scoring goals. Their forward line is very good with the quality they’ve got.

“But our record against the top teams, other than Lincoln, has been outstanding this season. It’s a big three points for us.”

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