Lee Clark admits he’s started to plan for life in League One with Blackpool.
Defeats in crucial games against Wigan and Birmingham this week have left the Seasiders in an impossible position at the bottom of the Championship – they need to win almost all of their remaining games to survive.
While he stopped short of admitting their fate is sealed, the 42-year-old conceded his thoughts are now on a major rebuilding job in the summer.
“I have to look to the future now and make decisions with that in mind,” he said.
“I felt last Saturday after Wigan there needed to be a line drawn in the sand and I have to now prepare for next season.
“We want a team who will compete for the remaining 11 games but also one which will prepare us.”
Blackpool welcome Sheffield Wednesday to Bloomfield Road tomorrow and will be without striker Gary Madine who is not allowed to face his parent club.
It will likely be another tough afternoon for Pool and their fans but Clark wants to change the feeling around the club with the summer in mind.
He said: “I’ve made a decision now to have one eye on next season and start to get some positive vibes about the rebuild.
“We aren’t giving up until it’s mathematically impossible but we have to also look forward now.
“Wednesday night gave me enough hope that when I do start the rebuilding job on May 3 we have some players who can play a part.
“We certainly won’t have six players on the first day of pre-season. We are planning things already for the summer, we are getting things in place now.
“I want to create a better atmosphere at this football club, that’s my aim now. We have to do that and be realists.
“I now want to have a structure in place for next season and give people opportunities to stake a claim to be part of the rebuilding job which I’ll be doing in the summer.
“We have loans here but there are possibilities for the future with the likes of Niall Maher, Grant Hall and Gary Madine.”