Terry McPhillips challenges Blackpool matchwinner to keep listening and learning

Armand Gnanduillet has been challenged to fulfil his potential by Terry McPhillips
Armand Gnanduillet has been challenged to fulfil his potential by Terry McPhillips

Terry McPhillips believes the sky’s the limit for Blackpool’s top goalscorer Armand Gnanduillet.

The striker scored the winner seven minutes from time in Saturday’s 2-1 victory against Southend United.

It was his sixth goal of the season, meaning he has already surpassed last season’s record of four goals in 31 appearances.

Gnanduillet’s record this season is even more impressive when you consider he’s missed four games through suspension for his red card in the 3-2 defeat at Fleetwood Town.

“He’s gone on to another level,” McPhillips said.

“I don’t think he’s had his best game. Missing the four games he missed, he was a bit rusty in the Tuesday night game (against Accrington Stanley in the Checkatrade Trophy).

“But he’s a handful and he has turned into a different monster and you don’t want to be playing against him.

“It was a great cross (from Harry Pritchard) but it was a hell of a header to put it back across the goalkeeper.

“So Armand has gone onto new things but he’s just got to keep listening really and keep working and keep getting better. The sky is the limit for him.”

The Seasiders’ win at Southend, their first at Roots Hall since 2001, was their fourth on the bounce.

It takes them to seventh in League One, level on points with Charlton Athletic who occupy that final play-off spot.

Gnanduillet was the man to seal the win seven minutes from time, scoring shortly after Southend had levelled things up through Jason Demetriou.

That had come after Blackpool had led for large parts of the game courtesy of Ollie Turton’s early opener, the first time the defender has scored this season.

“It was an exhilarating game, a close game. We were expecting that,” McPhillips added.

“But I thought we shaded it and I thought we had the better chances.

“The stats are even enough but I think we had the chances to kill the game off. Thankfully we scored at the end.

“But it was a great game and the effort of the lads was supreme.

“We can play better. First half we were okay, we got in the lead, but we knew we could play better and we didn’t really. But the effort was always there.

“Great credit to the players, this is the fourth long camel ride we’ve had and we go back now.

“We’ve done well on those trips, even the Arsenal game, as well as Gillingham and Exeter. Now we can add this to the list, along with Plymouth away.

“I’m just delighted with the three points.”

Elsewhere, Blackpool’s youth team came from two goals down to beat Preston North End 3-2 in league action at the weekend.

Their winner came in the final minute of the game via an own goal after Andy Kanga and Sam Maddox had scored to bring them back level.