Terry McPhillips believes his Blackpool players deserve “huge credit” for what they’ve achieved in spite of the facilities available to them.
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The Seasiders climbed to ninth place in League One with Monday’s last-gasp 2-1 win against Fylde coast rivals Fleetwood Town.
While Fleetwood have the luxury of training at the £6m Poolfoot Farm complex, Blackpool continue to use the often-mocked Squires Gate.
Chairman Andy Pilley continues to invest heavily in Fleetwood’s youth system, which paid dividends with 17-year-old James Hill being handed a first senior start against the Seasiders.
“He looks a hell of a prospect for them,” McPhillips said.
“The ball went over his head for the winning goal. He probably didn’t quite get that right but he looks a good athlete.
“He throws it further than Michael Nottingham, so that’s something.
“As far as I know he’s a first-year scholar, so fair play to him.
“They are spending a lot of money on their youth system and their facilities, and that’s why I want to give great credit to our lads.
“Not only do we play on our pitch, we also have to train at Squires Gate, where it’s bone hard and we don’t get any water.
“Fleetwood have the lovely facility at Poolfoot and they train on gorgeous pitches, so great credit to our lads for how they go about it.
“They never complain and they just get on with it. The facilities are going to be better next season, whether we’re at Squires or not, because some money has been put aside.
There is a plan, so that’s good. I like to plan anyway.
“It’s no surprise we can play nice football at Scunthorpe on a lovely pitch and I’m sure we’ll play some good football at Barnsley (on Saturday).
“We want to play but this game was the time to play a certain way to get the result, and I thought the lads did it to a tee to get the win.”
McPhillips also appeared to confirm after Monday’s game that his number two Tony Grant will leave the club at the end of the season.
Grant, who only joined the club last month following the surprise departure of Gary Brabin, has been linked with a move to Australia.
According to reports, he is due to link up with Robbie Fowler, who has taken the manager’s job at Brisbane Roar.
Grant was brought in as a short-term replacement until the end of the season and McPhillips was aware he had another job lined up in the summer.
The Pool boss said: “When I asked Tony to come I had worked with him before, so I knew exactly what he was going to bring.
“He’s been a great work colleague before and there’s a chance of him going somewhere else, which we knew before he came, so he signed a short-term contract with us.
“If it happens, then we wish him good luck and we thank him for all his hard work and the contribution he has made to Blackpool.”