JONJO Shelvey has singled out Barry Ferguson and Ian Holloway as big influences during his “brilliant” stay at Blackpool.
The 19-year-old is back at Liverpool – recalled suddenly last week because of a long-term injury to the midfielder Lucas – but did not feature in the squad for last night’s defeat at Fulham.
Shelvey has made no secret that part of him would still love to be with the Seasiders. He scored six goals in nine games, became a crowd favourite and made a point of coming to watch Saturday’s win over Reading.
Pool boss Ian Holloway said: “It was great to see him at the game. That’s what this club does to you – it gets in your blood. It’s a very special place.”
Shelvey agrees, he said: “I didn’t think I’d become involved with the club as much as I have.
“I’ve been going home after training thinking about getting Blackpool back to the Premier League. It’s been brilliant and I’ve got a lot to thank the fans and the club for because I’ve had the opportunity to play.”
Shelvey singled out the manager and skipper, and is full of respect and admiration for both.
“Barry Ferguson is a top player and I didn’t realise how much history he’s got until I looked him up on Wikipedia! He’s a great leader and a great player. You have to listen and learn from people like him.
“I’ve been in the game for three years and someone like Barry has dealt with being a footballer for his entire career.
“Ian Holloway is very different to previous managers I’ve had but he’s been first-class with the way he’s handled me.
“I’m quite a feisty character on the field because I want to win, and he’s given me a boost of confidence that I needed to take back to Liverpool.
“It’s been a pleasure playing for him, and I think I’m going back fitter and stronger.
“I first came on the scene at 16 but I think I’d gone off the boil recently. Because I had so much publicity from a young age, it can go to your head a little bit.
“It did with me and that’s why I’m glad to have been playing every week. I
think I did well at the club and I hope I’ve given the fans something to remember. If I’m allowed on loan again, I’d love to come back.”