IAN Holloway believes Saturday would be one of the best days in the Seasiders’ history if they beat Bolton – but he says they won’t succeed without the full backing of the fans.
It’s not quite a case of win or bust at Bloomfield Road, but with Manchester United away in the final game there is no doubt that the lunchtime kick-off against Bolton represents Pool’s best chance of picking up the three-point haul they need to have a realistic chance of staying up.
Wolves’ victory over West Brom on Sunday plunged the Seasiders into the bottom three and took the gloss off the terrific point at Spurs.
Holloway is plotting for the visit of Owen Coyle’s Bolton and says the supporters have a key role to play.
The Pool boss said: “It is going to be a real humdinger of a Lancashire derby, and if we win it will be one of the best Saturdays this great club has ever had.
“If we don’t, so be it. We have Manchester United on the final day. And if they watched us at Spurs, then they will know that nothing is guaranteed and that they’re in for a right battle. We all want another year in the Premier League so badly. One of our two games is at home, and I want people to realise that if they get nervous and bring that to the game it will hinder us.
“We didn’t have that last year. We didn’t have any nerves from the crowd and as a result the players managed to conquer all sorts of things.
“When Nottingham Forest scored against us in the play-off semi, or when Cardiff went ahead at Wembley, it took all sorts of courage to come back.
“But we did it last year, mainly because of the help from our fans. Their backing, and the way they never panicked, allowed us to stay calm and focused. I need that now more than anything.
“The chairman has had a bit of stick recently, with some fans asking why he hasn’t done certain stuff, but I don’t believe we have done anything wrong. I believe we can build again, and even if you don’t believe that, don’t take it out on my team. I need you to help, like all those away fans did at Tottenham.
“They were so good I had a lump in my throat. I was almost crying. They are magnificent people and those away fans haven’t ever, for a moment, forgotten how far we’ve come.
“We need the home fans to be exactly the same. Let’s get ready for a local derby that is going to be absolutely massive, and we need the fans right behind us from the first kick to the last.”
“So let’s get ready for a local derby that is going to be absolutely massive, and we need the fans right behind us from the first kick to the last.”