Blackpool manager Gary Bowyer admits that telling players they won’t feature in Sunday’s League Two play-off showdown at Wembley is the toughest part of his job.
The Seasiders are expected to have a virtually injury-free squad for the 3pm decider against Exeter City, though some players are still recovering from knocks.
It means Bowyer will have selection decisions to make as all the players try to catch his eye in training this week. And the manager admits he isn’t relishing having to leave some out of the team.
The Pool boss said: “It’s not easy and it’s not something I’m looking forward to but it’s part of the job. It’s something that you have to do.
“But training has been very good, spirits are very high and everyone’s really excited and looking forward to it.”
The Seasiders picked up a number of knocks during their heroic semi-final second leg at Luton, with Tom Aldred, Andy Taylor, Mark Cullen and Neil Danns among those struggling. But Bowyer revealed they have all trained this week and he is hopeful they will be fit enough to line up at Wembley.
“The medical team have done well,” he added. “All the players have been training and now we’ll see how they recover, but the initial signs have been very good.
“Fortunately the game is on the Sunday, which gives us an extra day.”
Also at yesterday’s pre-Wembley media day, Bowyer was quizzed about speculation linking him to the vacant manager’s job at Swindon.
He was installed as the bookies’ favourite on Tuesday, with SkyBet offering odds as short as 7/2 for Bowyer to take the County Ground hotseat.
But he responded to the rumours: “It’s news to me. Blackpool were brilliant with me in the summer because they gave me a job, so at this moment in time I’m delighted to be working here.”
The club has not issued an update regarding ticket sales since Tuesday evening, when they were said to have passed the 4,000 mark.