Blackpool skipper: Championship season has been a learning curve

Blackpool’s first season back in the Championship has provided an invaluable learning curve for a number of the squad’s more inexperienced members.

By Matt Scrafton
Wednesday, 1st June 2022, 6:00 am

That’s according to club captain Chris Maxwell, who had already played at this level prior to Blackpool’s promotion from League One last season.

It wasn’t the case for a number of his colleagues, with players like Dan Grimshaw, Marvin Ekpiteta, Sonny Carey, CJ Hamilton, Keshi Anderson, Shayne Lavery and Jerry Yates playing in the second tier for the first time.

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Chris Maxwell believes a lot of Blackpool players will have taken plenty from their first season in the Championship

“Each individual player, whether they played in the final game or not, should reflect on the season as a whole and look to see where we can improve – and make sure we come back and turn up on the first day of pre-season in the best condition possible and the best mental condition possible after a rest,” Maxwell told The Gazette.

“We’ve got to go again. We’ve got to look to emulate this season and hopefully go and do even better.

“I think the experience of a season in the Championship has improved individuals and the team as a collection.

“There wasn’t a lot of Championship experience in the squad at the start of the season but, after the campaign we’ve had, we know where we can get to and what we can improve upon.

“Going to some big clubs and big teams, and teams with lots of Premier League players in their squads, we now know what to expect.

“We can improve in all areas but you can’t take away from how well we’ve done this season.”

While the summer break will have been welcomed by footballers up and down the land after another exhausting campaign, Maxwell is already champing at the bit to get back into training.

“I’d be in on Sunday if I could,” he said after Blackpool’s final day loss at Peterborough United.

“I’m a workaholic, I’m desperate to improve, desperate to learn and maybe if you asked me the question a few days later then maybe it would be a different answer.”

Elsewhere, Blackpool midfielder Kenny Dougall will hope to be involved when Australia return to action tonight.

Dougall was included in the Socceroos’ squad for tonight’s friendly with Jordan (7pm UK time) before their World Cup play-off with the UAE next Tuesday.