Payback time tonight, says Riga

Jose Riga
Jose Riga
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Jose Riga has demanded a reaction from his players as high-flying Derby arrive at Bloomfield Road tonight (7.45pm kick-off).

The Blackpool manager pulled no punches after Saturday’s 4-2 hammering at Huddersfield and accused his players of “going missing”.

And Riga says tonight’s game against the second-placed Rams is the perfect chance for his side to put things right.

The Pool boss said: “I expect a big reaction after we missed Saturday’s game.

“It was maybe the first time we played like that. It’s the first game we really missed as a team and it’s sad it came on the back of a win.

“We have to get back up now. We have done it already this season after the start we had. We’ve lifted ourselves before and we have to do the same again.

“We know there’s a long season ahead and we have to find solutions.

“We can miss a game but it’s important we realise why and find solutions quickly.

“Derby are a tough team but there are no easy games for us and we know why.

“It will again be a tough game for us but it’s at home.”

Derby, who are full of confidence after Saturday’s 3-0 win at Reading, are tipped by many for promotion and haven’t conceded a goal in five games.

And with Pool now five points adrift of Championship safety, Riga has warned that no-one’s place is safe in tonight’s starting line-up.

He said: “There could be a lot of changes for Derby. I’m just looking for the best solutions inside the squad.

“Sometimes the solutions I choose work, sometimes they don’t. The story of the Championship is you have to be ready for every single game.

“We have to take the best of our worst experience on Saturday and take that into Tuesday.”

Riga is expected to make as many as five changes tonight, with Andrea Orlandi and Nile Ranger both in contention after missing the Terriers game.

Defender Jeffrey Rentmeister is also expected to be handed a starting place after his early appearance from the bench at the John Smith’s Stadium.