OPINION: Blackpool are caught between two stools going into Rotherham United clash

Nathan Delfouneso has been a significant absentee for Blackpool in recent weeks
Nathan Delfouneso has been a significant absentee for Blackpool in recent weeks
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Are you not entertained?!

Well no, not if you’re a Blackpool fan. That was the general consensus after Monday night’s drab affair at Bolton Wanderers anyway.

The Seasiders continue to grind out results but I think it’s fair to say the football on offer hasn’t been to the required taste of the fanbase, who booed the players off the park at the University of Bolton Stadium.

That was a little harsh, because the result wasn’t the worst.

I could perhaps understand it were the Seasiders struggling in the bottom half but they’re not. They’re in fourth and, results-wise, things are going well.

Simon Grayson’s men have 20 points to their name from the opening 12 games, a record that puts them right in the mix as we enter the congested winter schedule.

In fact, in the last decade, Blackpool have only bettered that tally on one occasion – and that was back in 2013.

But that shouldn’t hide from the fact the Seasiders are badly lacking in creativity at this moment in time.

Even though the results have improved since the back-to-back defeats against MK Dons and Coventry City, the men in tangerine have still only mustered four goals in their last four games.

The Seasiders could have carried on playing until midnight against the Trotters on Monday and they still wouldn’t have scored.

There’s a fine line between playing the game in an entertaining fashion and getting results and Pool probably find themselves on the wrong end of it at this moment in time. But they aren’t a million miles away.

But in some ways, supporters shouldn’t be too surprised.

When your club employs a proven winner like Grayson, you know what you’re going to get.

Simon Sadler said he wanted promotion from League One in two to three years and, despite being only a few months in, Grayson has the side contending up near the top. You can’t argue with the job he’s doing.

The return of Nathan Delfouneso and Sullay Kaikai should make a big difference, seeing as Pool’s promising early displays coincided with the forwards wreaking havoc with their pace and dynamism.

Grayson continues to remain tightlipped whenever he’s asked about their injuries, which has left us all a little in the dark.

I understand the need to play your cards close to your chest to throw off the opposition, but it would be nice to know if they’re back soon as they’re crucial to the way Blackpool want to play.

Without the duo, the Seasiders just have no pace or threat in behind and it’s far too easy for the opposition to deal with Armand Gnanduillet, who doesn’t get the required service if Liam Feeney is being marked out of the game – as he was earlier in the week.

I think the frustration from supporters is borne out of the knowledge that Blackpool do have the quality to perform better than they currently are doing.

But, other than the early away win against struggling Southend, the Seasiders have yet to look fully convincing in any other league outing.

And yet, the paradox is, they’re only three points adrift of the automatic promotion spots.

Pool will be aiming to cut that gap when they return to Bloomfield Road on Saturday to play Rotherham United.

The Millers were tipped by many to earn a return to the Championship and the first attempt, but it’s fair to say their form so far this season has been mixed.

Pool are probably taking them on at just the wrong time though seeing as Paul Warne’s side picked up an impressive 4-0 win against Coventry last weekend.

You’d still expect with the quality at their disposal, in a squad that features former Blackpool players Clark Robertson and Kyle Vassell, that Rotherham will be in and around the top six come the end of the season.

It promises to be another invaluable test of Blackpool’s credentials, as they come face-to-face with an opponent they’re likely to finish close to come the end of the season.

Let’s just hope for a more entertaining affair that what we had to endure on Monday, with some attacking intent on show.