Neil Critchley: Unbelievable Blackpool fans get louder and louder

Neil Critchley admits he’s running out of superlatives to describe Blackpool’s incredible support.

By Matt Scrafton
Monday, 25th October 2021, 8:00 am

MORE: Fans' gallery from a delightful derby dayThe Bloomfield Road atmosphere went up another notch on Saturday as the Seasiders claimed the derby spoils with a 2-0 win against Preston North End.

The victory, Blackpool’s first home win against PNE since 1997, was played in front of a cauldron of noise from the stands.

There were also memorable scenes come the final whistle as Critchley and his players celebrated in front of the North Stand.

The Blackpool fans roared their heroes to victory at Bloomfield Road on Saturday

“It’s amazing, absolutely unbelievable. I’m running out of superlatives to use,” Blackpool’s head coach said.

“Even before the game, it was a carnival and a party atmosphere from 2.30pm onwards – it was unbelievable.

“It just gets louder and louder and they get behind the team.

“They’re just a special group of supporters.

“I’m just privileged to stand here and sometimes I look at them and think, ‘I wouldn’t mind being in there with you’.

“I watch and it’s sort of mesmerising a little bit. I have to concentrate on the game.”

Given the noise created by the tangerine faithful, it’s no wonder Blackpool have won their last three games at Bloomfield Road and four of their last five.

After a slow start on home turf – when they were beaten by Cardiff City, Coventry City and Huddersfield Town – the Seasiders are beginning to make their home ground a fortress once again.

“We did that last season as well,” Critchley added.

“We didn’t have the current group together either at that point, so you could see what we were trying to find but we weren’t quite there. But we’ve improved since.

“If we can keep improving, we’ve shown we can give anyone a game, especially here at home.

“It’s a fantastic result, a fantastic three points, but we keep our feet on the ground and we’ve got Sheffield United away next week.”

Saturday’s win, Pool’s sixth from their last nine games, elevated Critchley’s side up to 11th place in the table.

Amazingly, the Seasiders are also level on points with fifth-placed Luton Town among the seven clubs on 21 points.

“We’re in good form, we’re playing well,” Critchley said.

“Since the first international break, we’ve won a lot of games but I think we’ll get better.

“I’m encouraged by what I’m seeing and by the players’ character, resilience and their ability to listen and learn. They will improve

“We weren’t quite at our best against an in-form Nottingham Forest (losing the previous Saturday 2-1), but we lost and we’ve bounced back with two really good wins. Long may it continue.”

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