Blackpool strikers’ perfect response to flak from Mac

Mark Cullen scored the winner at Doncaster
Mark Cullen scored the winner at Doncaster
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Neil McDonald is delighted with the response of his struggling strikers since he questioned their places in his starting 11.

The Blackpool manager blasted Mark Cullen, Danny Philliskirk and Jack Redshaw following the defeat at Oldham just over two weeks ago, claiming they “hadn’t been playing as well as they should”.

It followed a drought of goals from his first-choice front trio, but all three have been on the scoresheet since.

Redshaw scored a crucial header at Crewe, while Philliskirk’s goal earned a point against Bury and Cullen struck Monday’s late winner at Doncaster.

And they have left boss McDonald over the moon. He said: “We are all delighted for Mark, Jack and Danny – long may it continue.

“Their response been great. They are creating regular chances now and hopefully they will continue to put those in the back of the net.

“These lads took the criticism on the chin. It was constructive criticism after all.

“They want to show they are capable of scoring more goals.”

Redshaw missed Monday’s win through injury but still chose to travel to South Yorkhire with the players to offer his support.

Pool hope he will be fit for Saturday’s home clash with Southend and McDonald explained: “He’s got a sore hip, which he did against Crewe. We’ll see how that settles down with some treatment.

“Jack is a brilliant lad and is brilliant in the changing room. He’s a top lad who shows just how good the team spirit is – he chose to travel with the lads on Monday.”

This weekend Pool will be looking to extend a three-game unbeaten run which has lifted them a point clear of the relegation zone.

However, the two teams directly below them, Fleetwood and Oldham, both have two games in hand, meaning McDonald’s men have plenty of work still to do as they go into their final six games.

“I hope this is the run we needed to put together,” said the manager. “It’s seven points out of nine but we can’t get carried away.

“We have a lot of hard work left to do but the lads have been fantastic in the way they’ve responded. They’ve done really, really well.

“They’ve always tried their best as a group but sometimes they haven’t quite been good enough.”