Blackpool boss Gary Bowyer says his side’s ability to win ugly will add another string to their bow.
The Seasiders have enjoyed some convincing wins this season playing free-flowing football – the 4-2 victory over Doncaster and 4-0 success against Notts County the highlights – but until recently have struggled to battle their way to hard-earned victories.
That wasn’t the case at Stevenage on Saturday, when Bowyer’s men were far from their best but did what was required to pick up the three points with a 2-0 win.
Bowyer said: “You need that in your season. We’re showing at the moment that we can mix our game up, whether that’s good football, whether that’s competing or whether that’s the use of the squad.
“Seeing games out is something we’ve worked on and spoken about. Credit to the players because they’ve actually gone out and implemented that.
“We’re pleased with the progress but that’s all it is, progress.
“We’ve got a hell of a game on Saturday at home to Luton.
“We’ve just got to recover quickly and prepare as well as we did last week.”
The Seasiders have also struggled for clean sheets this season – the shut-out against Stevenage was only their fifth in 20 League Two games.
This is something else Bowyer is keen to improve on as he has confidence in his side’s ability at the other end of the pitch.
“The clean sheet is massive,” he added. “We have got a lot of confidence and belief in the team that we score goals.
“We’ve got goals in us, so if we can work hard from front to back to keep a clean sheet, then that gives us a great opportunity of winning football matches.”
Blackpool’s win at the Lamex Stadium last weekend came largely thanks to the impact of two of their substitutes, with Bright Osayi-Samuel and Mark Cullen both coming off the bench to score.
Osayi-Samuel’s strike was especially significant as it was his first professional goal and came in impressive style – he side-footed a superb effort from the edge of the box beyond the desperate dive of Stevenage goalkeeper Chris Day.
Bowyer paid tribute to the two goalscorers, whose late goals saw Blackpool climb back into the play-off zone ahead of their crunch clash with a Hatters side two points and two places above Pool in fifth.
Bowyer said: “It was a good advert for what we spoke about after our Checkatrade Trophy game last week in terms of the quality of the squad and the impact of the squad.
“To be able to turn around and use the squad was brilliant and I’m delighted for both scorers.”