Leeds United friendly a welcome step-up in quality for Michael Appleton's Blackpool

Tonight’s friendly against Premier League opposition will provide Blackpool with a welcome step-up in quality.

Thursday, 7th July 2022, 7:00 am

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That’s according to head coach Michael Appleton, who takes his side to York City’s LNER Community Stadium this evening (7pm kick-off) to take on Leeds United.

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“The remainder of our games now in pre-season are against much more difficult opposition,” Appleton told The Gazette.

“There’s only Salford really who will provide opposition from a team below us in the pyramid.

“It’s good we get the opportunity to get this out of the way and now look to step things up against Leeds.

“We’ll get tested big time against Leeds, we know that. They’re a good outfit and the players are really looking forward to it.”

Michael Appleton's side take on Leeds United this evening

The game marks Leeds’ first friendly of pre-season as Jesse Marsch’s side begin their preparations ahead of another season in the top flight.

The Elland Road outfit, who are expected to name a strong squad, fly out to Australia on Saturday for a pre-season camp.

As for the Seasiders, they travel to Scotland on Sunday for a camp of their own as they ramp up their work ahead of the curtain raiser against Reading on July 30.

Appleton, who has been in the role for just under three weeks, is enjoying working with his new players.

“They’ve been great, their attitude has been spot on,” he said.

“It can be difficult sometimes with change, they’ve been doing certain things for two years and had success behind it.

“There’s a little bit of change, but I’m not daft enough to change too much. I just want to see subtle things we can improve on with the ball, not necessarily without it.”

For those supporters not making the trip to York for tonight’s game, the fixture is also being lived stream by the club’s Tangerine TV service for a price of £4.99.

You can also follow all the action with The Gazette’s live blog, which will include all the build-up, team news, match updates and post-match reaction.