OPINION: Blackpool v Accrington Stanley is a tale of two owners

Accrington Stanley chairman Andy Holt (right)
Accrington Stanley chairman Andy Holt (right)
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Earlier this week I spent a good 20 minutes on the phone chatting to Accrington Stanley chairman Andy Holt – a man I’d describe as a shining light among a field of charlatans.

While I didn’t require that conversation to confirm what a good, responsible owner Holt is, it proved he is the complete antithesis of the man supposedly in charge of running Blackpool Football Club.

The sport is blighted with rogue owners, of course we don’t have to look far to see a prime example.

But what Holt offers is a glimmer of hope, a sign that things can be done differently. A sign that things must be done differently.

On the opening day of the 2010/11 season, just 1,624 spectators crammed into the Crown Ground to watch Accrington draw 0-0 with Aldershot Town in League Two.

Just a week later, Blackpool began their Premier League rollercoaster with a 4-0 thrashing of Lancashire rivals Wigan Athletic.

But this Saturday the two sides will take on each other very much as equals, with just seven points separating Blackpool and Accy in the league table.

Stanley might not have much – they’re honest enough to admit it themselves – but what they do is make the most of what they do have. They’re forever looking forwards and searching for ways to improve, too.

If only the same could be said of Blackpool, who still have so much unfulfilled potential due to the actions of one man.

One just hopes that when that individual does eventually depart Bloomfield Road, the person or group that is tasked with taking this club forward is just as honest and as forward-thinking as Holt.

I don’t expect all owners to be perfect, such an idea is fanciful, but it might have helped Blackpool had other owners and chairmen been as opinionated and as forthright with their views.