Michael Appleton breaks silence on Blackpool sacking and discusses future plans and false Preston links

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Michael Appleton has spoken publicly about his Blackpool sacking for the first time since losing his job earlier this month.
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The 47-year-old was given the axe after overseeing a 10-game winless run in the league, which left the Seasiders in 23rd place in the Championship table.

Blackpool’s former head coach, who was swiftly replaced by veteran manager Mick McCarthy, appeared on BBC Radio 5Live on Friday night ahead of the weekend’s FA Cup action.

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When asked if there was any regret he wasn’t taking his former Blackpool side to Southampton, Appleton said: “There’s clearly a little bit of that. You’re going to be frustrated when you lose your job, especially off the back of such a positive display a couple of weeks back against Nottingham Forest.

“But I’ve been quite fortunate with some of the clubs I’ve been at to beat Premier League opposition and that was obviously another enjoyable one for myself.

“Once we got the draw the following day, to find out we were due to play another Premier League team in Southampton there’s a hint of disappointment, but I’m aware of the business we’re in and you’ve just got to suck it up.”

Appleton appears keen to jump straight into another job, whether that be in a coaching or management capacity.

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Appleton is now out of work and looking for his next jobAppleton is now out of work and looking for his next job
Appleton is now out of work and looking for his next job

The former Lincoln City boss hasn’t ruled out even working abroad should the right opportunity present itself.

“I’m in a situation where I’m 400 games into a managerial career and I’ve had some real good successes, certainly at my previous two clubs with Lincoln and Oxford,” Appleton added.

“It’s not quite worked out for me at Blackpool as we know, but when I was first getting on the scene as a young coach that was the reputation I was picking up - that I was a coach and a developer of players, someone who was comfortable coaching and working at the elite level.

“I’ve got such an open mind going into the next venture I take because I’m happy coaching, I’ve been assistant manager in the Premier League with two clubs over a three-year spell. I’ve done the management.

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“But I’ve also done a Masters in Sports Directorship, so I’ve got such an open mind. Whether it’s a coaching role or a managing role, whether it’s going into more of a senior role, I think I’m at that point in my career now as a 47-year-old man who’s happy to take on the next venture.”

Appleton was later asked by presenter Darren Fletcher to give his views on Preston North End’s FA Cup tie against Tottenham after wrongly being labelled a PNE fan, something he was quick to shoot down.

“You’re going to cause absolute chaos for me! I’m not a Preston fan, this is part of the issue and why I was getting stick off Blackpool fans,” he said.

“I’m a Manchester United fan! You’re going to get me hate mail and everything. That’s part of the issue why I’m no longer the Blackpool manager.”