Gazza: I hope Blackpool ‘sort themselves out’

Paul Gascoigne at Bloomfield Road for an FA Cup tie in 1991
Paul Gascoigne at Bloomfield Road for an FA Cup tie in 1991
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Paul Gascoigne says he hopes Blackpool “sort themselves out” ahead of his rare summer trip to the resort.

The England legend spoke to The Gazette to sympathise with Pool’s long-suffering supporters, insisting they are “so important” to the club.

Gazza said: “I hope things sort themselves out at Blackpool eventually. I hope they do for the fans’ sake.

“Things change over time and hopefully they will for Blackpool’s fans.

“Supporters are so important to clubs and Blackpool are no different. It’s a shame some of them aren’t going to watch their team at the moment. I just hope it gets better for them soon.”

Gascoigne was promoting a special visit to Blackpool in June, when he will host a dinner at the Viva Showbar and talk about his life and career.

While Gazza admits he hasn’t visited the resort often, he recalled playing for Tottenham in an FA Cup third-round tie against the Seasiders in 1991, when Spurs went on to lift the cup, and spoke of memorable times in the town with former Pool striker Paul Stewart.

He said: “I didn’t go to Blackpool much as a kid, so I’m looking forward to coming in June.

“I remember the game for Spurs. Paul Stewart (who scored the only goal) still lives there, so it will be good to catch up with him.

“We regularly painted towns red back in the day and had some memorable times.”

Recent headlines have suggested Gascoigne’s health is again deteriorating, but he insists that his problems are behind him and a TV interview next week will prove it.

“I’m fine now,” he said. “I’m over the problems I had recently. I am due to do some TV interviews next week and hopefully you’ll all see how well I’m doing on GMTV on Wednesday.”

The former midfielder –who also played for Newcastle, Lazio and Rangers, and won 57 England caps – visits Blackpool right in the middle of this summer’s European Championships in France.

And he’s dismissed talk of England leaving Wayne Rooney out of the squad as “daft”.

Rooney’s selection for the national side has been much debated, after injury and loss of form has blighted his season with Manchester United.

But Gazza was quick to dismiss the doubters: “Talk of Rooney not going to the Euros is daft,” he told The Gazette. “His experience is so important for England and will be vital this summer.”

Rooney returned to action for Manchester United’s Under-21s this week and is on course to be fully fit as Roy Hodgson’s side head to France.

Gascoigne is no stranger to success in the European Championships, helping England to the semi-finals in 1996, and said: “I think we could do OK this time.

“I really like Dele Alli, Ross Barkley and Harry Kane. They are all really important.

“I loved playing for England and they were the best experiences of my life.”

Paul Gascoigne makes a one-off appearance at Viva Blackpool, with an up close and personal conversation about his life on and off the pitch. For tickets call James on 07940 371167 or visit www.vivablackpool.com.