Pool keeper unfazed by play-off schedule

Blackpool keeper Sam Slocombe
Blackpool keeper Sam Slocombe
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Having home advantage in the first leg of their play-off tie against Luton Town will have no effect on the outcome according to Blackpool goalkeeper Sam Slocombe.

The Seasiders host the Hatters at Bloomfield Road on Sunday before making the trip to Bedfordshire for the return tie on Thursday night.

But Slocombe played down suggestions that having home advantage for the first game could work in their favour.

“I think these days it doesn’t really matter anymore,” he said. “The main thing for us is to make sure we’re still in the tie after the first game.

“If you have an opportunity to take it into a one-game shootout you’re very happy because it gives you a good chance to get through to the next round.

“But we can’t look any further than the next game.”

Blackpool boss Gary Bowyer believes his side are the underdogs going into the game after losing on both occasions against Luton this season.

Slocombe believes that’s hard to argue with after Luton, who finished fourth in the League Two table, did the double over Blackpool this season.

“I think if you look at the league positions then I would agree with that. Over the season they’ve been a few points better than us,” the 28-year-old said.

“But it’s the play-offs. One team is going to come in as underdogs and generally that team is the one that finished the lowest.

“But different teams will take different tags. We’re just confident in the ability we have.

“We understand it’s going to be a very tough game but we’re focused to put on a really good performance.

“Luton have been strong over the course of the season and that’s shown in their league position.

“They’ve been in good form, especially when they played here.

“They were very strong but I don’t think we played to our best that game.

“When we went down to their place, I think that was much more of a fairer reflection of the table and how our teams have performed this season.

“I think it will be quite similar to that second game and then the outcome could be anything. We had a lot of chances at their place but their keeper pulled off a lot of great saves. They had a few chances as well so it will be a tight game.

“We expect that to be the case in the play-offs because you’re playing the top teams that didn’t get promotion.

“We’re happy to be here and we’re happy to have this challenge put in front of us. Hopefully now we can come out of it the other side.

“We’re keeping everything as normal as possible which is something we’ve done well up to now and has stood us in good stead.”