Evatt: Europa League could have cost us

Ian Evatt and Keith Southern along with the other Pool players wait to find out if their wages will be cut by 50 per cent.
Ian Evatt and Keith Southern along with the other Pool players wait to find out if their wages will be cut by 50 per cent.
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IAN Evatt reckons missing out on a European place is a blessing.

The centre-back is singing from the same hymn sheet as his manager on the subject of Pool’s failure to book a Europa League spot – they were pipped by Fulham for the place available through the Fair Play League.

Boss Ian Holloway was pleased they didn’t qualify and so is Evatt, who believes next season’s fixture list could have been a congestion nightmare.

The 29-year-old said: “I don’t think many of us are too bothered about missing out on Europe to be honest. The big thing for me would have been the number of games.

“In the Championship you play a lot of midweek games anyway, so if we had got into the Europa League and done OK we’d have been playing Saturday-Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday. It could have been a massive blow to our promotion hopes.

“Birmingham will have to deal with it next season and good luck to them.”

Evatt realises many Pool fans may have relished a European adventure, which is why he is pleased the players can’t be blamed for the club missing out.

“To only miss out by one point means it probably wasn’t because of a yellow or a red card,” he explained, before adding with a smile: “Hopefully, it is because the gaffer had a go at one of the Premier League referees. It would be nice for him to shoulder the blame!”