Clark: We owe you a show

Blackpool manager Lee Clark
Blackpool manager Lee Clark
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Lee Clark said his players owe a performance to everyone involved with Blackpool FC this afternoon.

A week on from the 7-2 slump at Watford, this is Pool’s first chance to put it right as Brighton visit Bloomfield Road.

And the manager admitted he’s delighted to see the back of a week to forget.

Pool boss Clark said: “We owe it to everyone to put in a performance today.

“It’s been awful since Saturday. I wish we had played on Tuesday night.

“As a manager, it would have been easy for me to batter the players but I have to look at the bigger picture.”

Clark revealed a team meeting with a difference had cleared the air – he asked the players to highlight their own errors after watching the game back in full.

The manager explained: “As staff we didn’t say a lot. We decided to let the players sit down on their own and watch the game.

“We then asked them to write down comments about what they think they could do better.

“After they had done that, we shared our thoughts on what had happened and it was very productive.

“They knew there was a team meeting first thing on Monday morning, and they probably thought we’d stand there and point the finger.

“That isn’t the way forward and I didn’t do that. I felt that doing what we did was the best way to go.

“It hasn’t been a week of laughing and joking. Everyone has been hurting but the mood has been good as the week went on.”

Pool have an almost fully-fit squad for today’s game and will hand a debut to midfielder Joe Rothwell.

The 20-year-old, loaned from Manchester United for the rest of the season, is expected to start on the wing against a much-improved Brighton side.

The Seagulls have lost only one of their last six Championship games, winning two out of three since Chris Hughton took charge at the turn of the year.

And Clark was full of praise for today’s opponents. “Chris is a very experienced manag

er, who has a good record at this level,” he said.

“We won’t read much into the cup game (they lost 3-2 at home to Arsenal in the FA Cup fourth round last Sunday) but the league games show how good they are. They have some really good attacking players.”

Rotherham’s midweek win over Bolton left Pool 12 points from Championship safety and Clark added: “If we can get a win we will bring Brighton back into the mix. I want us to get the gap back down to nine.”