McDonald: I know I’m in the firing line at Blackpool

Neil McDonald
Neil McDonald
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Neil McDonald understands the stick he gets in the Blackpool hotseat – and he is more than willing to accept it.

The Pool manager faced criticism over his side’s dreadful start to the season, from fans and sections of the media alike.

But the 50-year-old insists he is thick-skinned and conceded: “Criticism is part of the job.

“You are more than entitled to ask difficult and straight questions, although sometimes I don’t like answering them.

“As for the fans, it’s their club so they are entitled to say what they like, but we are all working hard to get things right here.

“On the whole, I think I’ve been honest enough and always come out to speak to you.

“I’ve stood firm on the belief we have in the players.

“The Fleetwood result has given us hope that everything we are trying to do is right.

“Sometimes when you keep losing you have doubts.”

Having suffered seven defeats on the bounce before last Saturday’s win over their Fylde coasts neighbours, even the ultra-positive McDonald sounded like he was beginning to waver.

But the former West Ham assistant boss hopes his players gained confidence from the 1-0 victory over Town.

He said: “Confidence is a huge thing, of course, but we don’t lack heart and we always play for the shirt. In the five league games before Fleetwood, we weren’t good enough. Hopefully that win will give us the confidence to play better football.”

Pool will be glad to see the back of November, in which not one member of the squad managed to score.

It took an own goal from Nathan Pond to seal victory over Fleetwood. Now everyone associated with Bloomfield Road is hoping for a more positive December.

“It’s been a tough month for sure,” admitted McDonald. “We played two home games and six away, and our away form isn’t great.

“I think 14 of our 21 points have come at home, which is an outstanding return really.

“I think we only really let ourselves down in the game against Doncaster. We’ve stopped conceding from corners now, which is very good.

“There are lots of positive points to our play. Let’s hope we see a big improvement in results. We are certainly putting the effort in.”