Neil Critchley delighted to have Marvin Ekpiteta and Keshi Anderson back from injury ahead of Blackpool's potential play-off campaign

Marvin Ekpiteta and Keshi Anderson made a timely return from injury on Saturday during Blackpool's comprehensive 3-0 win against Northampton Town.

Monday, 3rd May 2021, 1:00 pm

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For Anderson, it was his first taste of the action since January 2, when he was forced to undergo surgery on a hamstring injury.

It was initially feared the 26-year-old would be out for the remainder of the season, but the midfielder has managed to make his return with two games of the season remaining.

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Keshi Anderson returned from a four-month lay-off on Saturday

His return is especially significant given the Seasiders' lack of options in the forward areas.

“I had to shut him up because he’s been telling me how long he should get and that he was ready to play," Critchley joked.

“That was a decision we took on Friday. He trained during the week and we felt with the games we’ve got coming up, now was the time to start introducing him back.

“We didn’t need to wait because he’s done everything in training. He’s fit and ready to go.

“He’s another one where he’s done his work to the absolute letter. He’s done everything by the book, wanted to get back and done his work unbelievably well. This is his reward.

“If we can extend our season, we’ll get the best of Keshi at a very good time.”

Ekpiteta, meanwhile, has been fit for a number of weeks since returning from a hamstring injury he suffered in February.

But the centre-back has had to bide his time with Dan Ballard, Jordan Thorniley and James Husband preferred in a back three at Sixfields on Saturday.

“Marvin has been patient, he’s been waiting," Critchley said.

“He’s been asking me what he can do and it’s quite simple really, just be patient and wait because the defenders have been doing ever so well.

“It’s nice for him to get back on and again, I know he wasn't on for particularly long but I thought he looked very assured when he came on.”

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