A deflated Terry McPhillips admits time is running out for his Blackpool side to put a run together and seal a place in the play-offs.
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Saturday’s dismal 3-0 defeat at Burton Albion has left the Seasiders ninth in League One, four points adrift of Doncaster Rovers who occupy the last play-off spot with a game in hand.
Blackpool have just eight games remaining to salvage a top-six spot, with Gary Bowyer’s Bradford City next up at Valley Parade on Saturday.
McPhillips said after Saturday’s defeat: “We’ve just lost 3-0 and we weren’t very good.
“If we could have got the three points, which we’re more than capable of normally, it would have pushed us right up there, so it’s a body blow for all of us and a huge disappointment.
“For the travelling fans who have come, we haven’t done enough for them.
“We’re going to have to go on a run but the games are getting less now – there’s just eight to go. We’re running out of games to make a claim but we’ll see. We’ll pick ourselves up and see what next week brings.”
Many fans questioned McPhillips’ team selection at the weekend, with Marc Bola and Nathan Delfouneso left on the bench.
Pool also opted to persist with the diamond formation that has proved fairly ineffective since being introduced in the draw at Charlton Athletic last month.
“Marc Bola is on the bench and we’re getting more training into him, so we didn’t think it was right to start him,” McPhillips said, explaining the left- back’s absence.
“Donervon Daniels declared himself fit and he trained.
“And with Tilty (Curtis Tilt) not making it and Michael Nottingham coming on in the last game and scoring, it wasn’t too difficult to pick the back four.
“Donervon has played on the left (of the two centre-backs) before, to be fair.
“It wasn’t just him that was poor, was it? There were a few of them: Nick (Anderton), Michael (Nottingham).
“We just weren’t at the races and it’s a crying shame.”
When asked why he was persevering with the diamond system, McPhillips said: “We’re just trying to do better at the other end and trying to score more goals by having two up there.
“But it didn’t work, did it? So we’ll see what we do for Saturday.”
The Seasiders will be without Jordan Thompson for this weekend’s trip across the Pennines, the midfielder having been called up to Northern Ireland’s squad for their Euro 2020 qualifiers against Estonia tomorrow and Belarus (Sunday).
“I’m really pleased for him,” McPhillips added. “He’s a good player for us.
“He was out ill, so that just disrupted it a little bit for him, but hopefully he can go on a run of games now, and make and score a few goals for us.”