Simon Grayson explains Jordan Thompson's absence in Blackpool's FA Cup draw at Reading

Thompson was absent from Blackpool's squad at the Madejski Stadium
Thompson was absent from Blackpool's squad at the Madejski Stadium
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Jordan Thompson missed Blackpool's FA Cup third round tie at Reading on Saturday with a toe injury according to manager Simon Grayson.

READ MORE: All the important details ahead of tonight's FA Cup fourth round draw

The midfielder was absent from Blackpool's squad at the Madejski Stadium as the Seasiders were forced to settle for a replay after drawing 2-2 with their Championship opponents.

The Northern Irishman, who celebrated his 23rd birthday last Friday, suffered the knock during Blackpool's last league game.

“He got injured at Rotherham," Grayson told The Gazette.

“That wasn’t the reason why I took him off at half-time but he had a toe injury which ruled him out.”

Thompson was withdrawn from the action at the break during Pool's 2-1 reversal at the New York Stadium on New Year's Day.

It was part of a tactical shake-up, with Grayson also deciding to bring off Sullay Kaikai as he reverted to three at the back.

Curtis Tilt and Joe Nuttall were the two to enter the fray after the interval but they were unable to stop the Seasiders from suffering their third defeat from their last four league games.

Thompson, meanwhile, continues to be linked with a move away from Bloomfield Road this month.

Stoke City, managed by Thompson's Northern Ireland coach Michael O'Neill, are reported to be just one of several Championship clubs keeping tabs on him.

O'Neill was the man responsible for handing a first cap to Thompson in May 2018 and has since played him against the likes of Germany and the Netherlands.

His first senior start for his country came in a 1-0 friendly win over Luxembourg in September.

Thompson, a 2018 free transfer from Rangers, enjoyed a strong first season at Bloomfield Road, scoring three times in 47 appearances.

Known for his calmness and composure on the ball, the midfielder has since gone on to make a further 24 appearances this term, scoring an impressive individual goal in the 2-1 win against Lincoln City in September.

However in recent weeks he has found himself on the bench, with Grayson favouring Matty Virtue beside Jay Spearing in the centre of midfield.

The midfielder's contract expires at the end of the season but the Seasiders do have the option to extend his deal by a further year.