Jay Spearing admits Jordan Thompson will be a big miss for Blackpool against Coventry City this weekend.
The 22-year-old will miss his first league game of the season after being called up to the Northern Ireland squad.
Spearing and Thompson have struck up an impressive partnership in central midfield so far this season, but the club captain says his absence will present an opportunity for another player.
“Thommo has come back with a fresh kick in his feet and he’s been brilliant so far this season,” Spearing told The Gazette.
“I think we have a good connection and a good partnership but he’s away on international duty this weekend and he deserves to be.
“He’s worked hard for it and he loves going there.
“But we have got plenty of lads who can come in and fill in his spot and they will want to keep that spot.”
Despite missing Thompson, Spearing believes the Seasiders have more than enough strength in depth to cope.
“The lads came in on Tuesday night and knew exactly their positions and the way we play,” he added.
“The competition for places is big, a lot bigger than it has been in the last two seasons I’ve been here. But it’s a fight everyone is willing to be involved in.”