Everybody needs to stick together says Blackpool boss Neil Critchley

After back-to-back defeats, Neil Critchley has issued a rallying call to his Blackpool players: now is the time to stick together and remain positive.

Monday, 26th April 2021, 8:00 am

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Despite the setback, Critchley’s side remain in the League One play-offs with four games to go, though now only on goal difference.

Ahead of a trip to third-placed Sunderland tomorrow, the head coach said: “It’s never nice to lose a game of football. It’s just the time when we need to stick together and be positive.

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A few weeks ago Blackpool would undoubtedly have taken their current position says Neil Critchley

“It’s still in our own hands, so a few weeks ago we’d have settled for this type of situation.

“It was never going to be easy and it’s proving that, but I don’t doubt the honesty and the endeavour of these players and it’s not the time to start doing that.

“Rewind three or four weeks, if you had said we’d be in the play-offs with four games to go and with it still being in our hands, we’d have taken that definitely.

“We’ve got to remind ourselves of that. It’s very difficult to do that now obviously, but when we come back in on Monday we have to go again, we have to respond.

“That’s the game we’re in. There’s no easy solution. We have to stick together, keep believing in what we’re doing and find that bit of better quality and better decisions in front of goal to turn these frustrating games into victories.”

Pool have no time to dwell on Saturday’s defeat, with the trip to Wearside followed by their final away game of the season at Northampton Town on Saturday.

Critchley added: “Sunderland won’t be easy at all because they’re a very good team. But what a good game to bounce back in, if we can at all.

“That’s a good challenge and I’m really looking forward to that game.

“Northampton are obviously fighting for their lives and need to win but our immediate concern will be Tuesday night.”

Having enjoyed a 16-game unbeaten run prior to their consecutive losses, the Seasiders have lost momentum at just the wrong time.

When asked if he’ll have to pick his players up in training this week, Critchley responded: “Every day there’s always psychology involved. That’s the challenge and that’s why we love the job.

“It’s a different type of situation we’re in. This is completely different to the run we went on at the start of the season.

“But as ever, the best thing always to do is talk about it, analyse it and work on it, and stick together and try to solve it on the pitch –there’s no other way.

“We’ll be doing everything we can between now and Tuesday night.”

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