Brett Ormerod column: Sometimes a player has to step back to move forward

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The big news last week was Ryan Hardie rejoining Plymouth Argyle on loan.
Read More
Gary Taylor-Fletcher: Why I'm making the move to USA

It’s an opportunity for him. Plymouth have a good, up-and-coming manager in Ryan Lowe, so it’s a good move for him.

Some people will say Blackpool are strengthening another team in their division, but sometimes it just doesn’t work out for you with a club for whatever reason.

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Ryan Hardie, here in action against Wolves Under-21s, scored his only Blackpool goal in the EFL TrophyRyan Hardie, here in action against Wolves Under-21s, scored his only Blackpool goal in the EFL Trophy
Ryan Hardie, here in action against Wolves Under-21s, scored his only Blackpool goal in the EFL Trophy

I played for a lot of clubs in my time – some went brilliantly and some didn’t. With the ones which went badly, it wasn’t that I wasn’t trying or had a bad attitude – sometimes it doesn’t go your way.

Sometimes as a pro you have to take a step back to move forwards.

As a footballer you need to be playing regular football matches. If Ryan wasn’t going to get that at Blackpool, then you can’t blame him for going out for himself and his family. That’s how you make a living in the game.

Blackpool have brought in a number of attacking players this summer, which obviously makes it more difficult for him as well.

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The club have been one of the most ambitious in the EFL so far – the owner certainly isn’t messing around.

He wants Blackpool back in the Championship and it’s as much activity as I’ve ever seen from Blackpool. Just look how he backed Simon Grayson last season during the January window.

In the last year or so, Blackpool have probably done more business than they did in the previous 20!

It’s showing they’re ambitious and they want to go up. They have a good manager, who has now had a lot of time to assess his squad – time he wouldn’t normally get.

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He’s learned under Jurgen Klopp, who is the best manager out there right now. Neil Critchley is young and hungry, he wants to put a stamp down and he’s got a chairman willing to back him. Hopefully Blackpool will hit the ground running.

Some fans are surprised Hardie hasn’t been given more of a chance in pre-season training but you never know what goes on behind the scenes.

Football is about opinions. The manager obviously wants to play a certain way and he’s bringing in players to suit that style.

Tony Weston, a 16-year-old from the academy, also departed in a big move to Rangers. It’s a great move for him but Blackpool will naturally be disappointed.

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One thing that disappointed me with Blackpool over the last few years was the lack of players coming through the ranks and making it into the first-team.

Despite all the off-the-field problems in the past, the club maintained a good academy and brought through some talented lads. I know John Hills well and he was there when they brought a lot of players through.

The problem back then was that the club wouldn’t secure the future of these kids and ended up losing them for nothing. Some of these players would go on to have good careers.

Rangers are paying a lot of money for a 16-year-old, but that’s partly what your academy is for if it’s run properly. You can make a lot of money out of these youngsters and subsidise the rest of the football club.

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It’s always nice to see young lads coming through and making the first-team and there have been lots at Blackpool. John Murphy is still involved with the academy. I’ve not spoken to him for a while but he has a good head on his shoulders.

It is only a couple of years ago that Murphs enjoyed a really good cup run. There’s still a lot of talent there.

Hopefully Blackpool can keep a lot of these players but if they can sell a 16-year-old for £250,000, for me that’s good business.

My old Blackpool teammate Gary Taylor-Fletcher has a new job coaching in the States. I spoke to him about it a few months ago, when it was first on the cards, but at the time Covid was just starting to hit and threw everything up in the air.

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He’s keen as mustard is Fletch. He wants a manager’s job and I wish him all the best. It’s a fantastic move for him and his family, and hopefully it goes well.

He’s tried to get a coaching role here in England but it’s not easy. There aren’t many jobs out there. Normally you have to know someone just to get an interview, never mind get an opportunity. It’s difficult to get on that ladder.

He applied for the Blackpool job in February, so the enthusiasm is definitely there. He had a good run with Bangor in Wales as well.

Me and Hillsy had a quick taste of it when we went in at AFC Fylde for a few games and I absolutely loved it, so I can see why people are tempted.

It’s just about getting that opportunity in the first place. And the higher you go, the less likely you are to get a chance because there’s so much at stake.