Blackpool players’ chance to rest and recuperate

Harry Pritchard is looking forward to a free weekend
Harry Pritchard is looking forward to a free weekend

Harry Pritchard says Blackpool’s players will be making the most of their unexpected weekend off as they look to recharge their batteries.

The Seasiders don’t have a game today as their scheduled trip to Sunderland was postponed because of the home side’s international call-ups.

The international break only applies to the top two divisions in England so a weekend off is a rarity for sides in League One.

However, any side that has three or more players called up is able to request a rearrangement.

That means Blackpool will not be playing again until next Saturday, when they welcome a struggling AFC Wimbledon line-up to Bloomfield Road.

Pritchard says Blackpool will use their added time off to their advantage going into next week.

“We’ve got a couple of days off over the weekend to relax and rest and see the family,” he said.

“Then we’ll come back on Monday and work hard. We’ve obviously got a big game coming up next week at home to AFC Wimbledon. We’ll work on that but we’ll enjoy the rest.

“We probably won’t get another opportunity like this over the course of the season so we’ll make the most of it.”

Blackpool currently sit in the bottom half of the table despite losing just one league game all season, the 2-1 reversal to league leaders Portsmouth on the second weekend of the campaign.

The Seasiders’ problem has been drawing too many games, with Terry McPhillips’ men being forced to settle for a point in seven of their opening 11 fixtures.

A main reason for this has been Blackpool’s bluntness in attack, which has seen them net just 12 times so far this season.

“Things are going well,” Pritchard added. “Obviously we need to turn these draws into wins but that will come.

“We’ll work on a few things but we’re definitely playing well, we just need to finish our chances. Once we do that, I think we’ll be fine.”

Pritchard made his return from injury on Tuesday as Blackpool lost 2-1 to West Brom U21s in their second Checkatrade Trophy group game of the season.

It brought an end to the Seasiders’ 13-game unbeaten run, as trialist Steve Davies’ goal proved in vain.

“Despite losing the unbeaten run, the spirit is still there,” Pritchard said. “Most of the players are happy to get on the pitch.

“Unfortunately the result wasn’t there but I think we can work on a few things. But I think most of the lads put in a good shift and got what they needed out of it.

“We’ve got depth in our squad. We made 10 changes so you can see we’ve got that.

“Unfortunately the result wasn’t there, but for most people it was about getting those minutes in the legs that haven’t been playing.”