Blackpool hope striker could be back for Portsmouth trip

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Neil Critchley is hopeful that Gary Madine can return from his injury lay-off in time for Blackpool’s long trip to Portsmouth.

The striker has missed Blackpool’s last three games after being given injections to help him with an ongoing groin issue.

While the 30-year-old isn’t far away from returning to the fold, Critchley was unable to offer any guarantees that it would happen at Fratton Park on Saturday.

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“We’re hopeful. We’ve got 48 hours to go, so we’ve got our fingers crossed,” Pool’s head coach said on Thursday.

Gary Madine has been a recent absenteeGary Madine has been a recent absentee
Gary Madine has been a recent absentee

“He’s been out for a couple of weeks and we want to give him some training, but it’s not an extensive period of time where we’d have to ease him back in.

“When we feel he’s ready to go, then I think he’ll be ready to come straight back into the team. Whether that’s for Saturday, I wouldn’t be 100 per cent certain yet.”

The Seasiders will definitely be without Marvin Ekpiteta, who injured his hamstring during Tuesday night’s win against Rochdale.

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Ekpiteta, who has started every league game this season, is due to undergo a scan today to discover the full extent of the injury.

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