Blackpool's plans for the international break mapped out as they prepare for crucial seven games

Neil Critchley (Photographer Lee Parker / CameraSport)Neil Critchley (Photographer Lee Parker / CameraSport)
Neil Critchley (Photographer Lee Parker / CameraSport)
Blackpool have a free weekend before their next outing- which comes away to Derby County on Good Friday.

The Seasiders head into the international break on the back of a 1-0 defeat against Wigan Athletic on Saturday afternoon. While they have slipped down to ninth in the League One table, they are still just three points off the final play-off spot.

Neil Critchley states his side have a number of important things to work on before their outing at Pride Park, with a big battle facing them, as Oxford United, Stevenage, Lincoln City and Leyton Orient all aim for sixth spot as well.

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"We’ll have a little period of rest then get on the training pitch,” he said.

"We’ve lost a few bodies so we can’t afford many more injuries, so we have to be sensible with what we’re doing. It’ll give us a chance to reinforce some of our principles of how we want to play, and what we think will be important for the next seven games because we won’t get too much spare time once it starts up again, we have to use the time wisely. We’ve got a shout and we’re fighting.

"We’d rather keep playing and stay in rhythm at this stage of the season, but it is what it is; it’ll help us to prepare for the run-in.

"We will need to get the balance right between rest and keeping the players mentally in tune with what’s to come, and that’s the work we do on the training pitch every day, being focussed on the last seven games. We’ve already spoken about it as staff, we’ll make sure we’re focussed and the players know they’re not just coming in to pass time. We won’t be having a five-a-side then going home, we’ll be working on different areas of our game.”