Why Blackpool are feeling galvanised ahead of Watford test despite winless league run

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Michael Appleton believes there’s a really “good feel” among his Blackpool squad ahead of today’s trip to Watford.
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The Seasiders are without a win in their last nine league games, a run that leaves them rooted inside the Championship’s bottom three.

But Appleton’s men recorded their first victory since October in the FA Cup last week, dispatching Premier League side Nottingham Forest 4-1.

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The return of Josh Bowler has also galvanised the fanbase, while further quality has been added to the ranks in the form of Morgan Rogers and Tom Trybull.

“I’ve said it enough times, Josh is a matchwinner. He can change a game very, very quickly,” Appleton said ahead of Bowler’s potential second debut in tangerine.

“The one thing we’ve tried to do since coming back from Spain is be harder to beat and I think we’ve done that. We’re a bit more stubborn than we were prior.

“When you’ve got players like Josh in your team, it gives you an opportunity to win games.

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The Seasiders recorded a 3-1 victory over today's opponents back in OctoberThe Seasiders recorded a 3-1 victory over today's opponents back in October
The Seasiders recorded a 3-1 victory over today's opponents back in October

“We’ll get there over time. There’s a real good feel about the place at the minute, the lads are buzzing. They were before the Forest game to be honest, I’d like to think they knew something was turning. I’ve had that feeling in training and around the place.

“When we were in the proverbial and under the cosh and things were against us, they found a way to turn that around in a couple of games and it was pleasing to see.”

Pool are looking to complete a league double over Watford, having beaten them 3-1 at Bloomfield Road back in October.

Despite losing their last three league games, the Hornets remain handily-placed in fourth place.

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“It was good. We played quite well on the day,” Appleton reflected on the initial encounter.

“It was interesting because we started well and got ahead early. They pegged us back with a wonderful goal and put us under some pressure and had a good spell just before half-time.

“In the second-half it was a good game, it could have gone either way but we finished really strongly for the last 15 to 20 minutes.

“I don’t know how much they’ve just spent on a player, but it was north of £10m so that’s the type of club we’re coming up against.

“They’ve got good players in their team. I know they’ve got a few injuries but you only have to look at the top end of the pitch to see how strong they are as a unit.”