Gary Bowyer has admitted his Blackpool side have progressed a lot quicker than he could ever have anticipated.
The Seasiders are just 90 minutes away from an instant return to the third tier of English football as they take on Exeter City in the League Two play-off final this weekend.
Promotion would be quite the achievement for Bowyer, who arrived at the club when it was in turmoil both on and off the pitch having suffered the second of back-to-back relegations.
Bowyer admits he could never have foreseen the progress Blackpool have made on the pitch this season, but says it is the result of a lot of hard work.
He said: “My initial aim was to bring stability to the club.
“It had been well documented what had happened in previous years and they had just suffered back-to-back relegations, so I wanted to lay some foundations to build on.
“We’ve then progressed quickly, a lot quicker than I ever expected but that’s down to the work of the staff and the players.
“The progress the players have made is fantastic. The work they’ve put in on the training ground, the desire they’ve had to improve and we have players in my opinion who can play a lot higher than what we’re currently playing at.
“It’s been a great pleasure to work with them and I’m proud of what they’ve achieved so far - but we now have one more game to eclipse what we’ve done so far.
“What we’ve got to do now, regardless of the result on Sunday, is to build on that.