Iceman Gretarsson will be even better for Blackpool next season says boss Neil Critchley
Neil Critchley believes Blackpool’s Daniel Gretarsson will be even better next season following his first six months in English football.
The 25-year-old Iceland international was due to undergo a scan yesterday to determine whether he will be able to play again this season after picking up a shoulder injury in Saturday’s win over Sunderland.
The head coach thinks Gretarsson’s best is yet to come, saying: “We had to defend bravely and put bodies on the line.
“Daniel Gretarsson and Dan Ballard both do that and produced warrior-like performances. They are competitive, they put their heads in, they block and compete in aerial duels.
“Gretarsson does get banged around a bit and it shows how tough he is. He has adapted to the rigours of English football and they may not be what he has faced before but he is a warrior. He has that ice-cold mentality that if he is knocked down, he gets up and gets on with it.
“He has a great character and a reliability I really like and I think he will be even better next season after the experience he’s had. He will be a miss but we have defensive reinforcements.
“There can be different prognoses for this type of injury and there might not be too much damage around the shoulder.
“If that is the case, then maybe we can fit a brace and he might be fine in a week or two, but the worst case scenario is that you are looking at five or six weeks.”
Gretarsson is just the latest in a long line of Blackpool players to suffer injuries during what has been an unprecedented campaign.
“We want to play with intensity and aggression,” Critchley added.
“We are not a soft side, we play competitively and we play tough.
“We had some unfortunate sendings off in the first few games but, overall, our discipline has been good.
“Sometimes it comes down to sheer willpower and determination not to concede.
“Yes, 1-0 wins are very satisfying as a coach but I’d like to do it a little easier because being 1-0 up with 10 minutes to go means the heart is pounding.
“You have to stay calm and trust the players, and we’ve done that more than enough to know we are capable of doing it.
“I have to use my experience on the sideline. If you see the players are dead on their feet, maybe they need a voice on the side to settle them for a few minutes and that comes down to intuition and experience.
“It’s important that the players see me and see my emotions and passion and what it means to me.”
Thanks for reading. If you value what we do and are able to support us, a digital subscription is just £1 for your first month. Try us today by clicking here.