'It brought the team together': Blackpool captain Jay Spearing on Gary Bowyer's shock exit
Blackpool captain Jay Spearing says Gary Bowyer's shock resignation just one game into the season served to strengthen the bond between the players.
The former Pool boss walked away from his job just three days into the new campaign on the back of the opening day draw at Wycombe Wanderers.
Bowyer’s number two Terry McPhillips initially stepped into the role on a temporary basis before taking on the job full-time in September.
McPhillips has since guided the Seasiders to the cusp of the League One play-offs.
Spearing, who has played a leading role in Blackpool’s form this season, believes one of the main factors in their success has been the unity among the squad.
He told BBC Radio Lancashire: “With everything that happened in the first week, with Gary leaving, everyone was thinking ‘oh no, what’s going to happen here?’
“But the lads haven’t allowed it to affect us, we’ve carried on and we take every game as it comes.
“I’ve said it before, we had a meeting individually in our own room and we asked ourselves where this group wants to go this season and what we want to achieve.
“A little video was made of everyone’s response and the answer was the play-offs.
“I think the squad we’ve got, the togetherness, the commitment we have to not concede goals, the mix of youth and experience, I think it’s a great mixture.
“We seem to be doing okay at the minute but we’ve got a long way to go and we won’t be getting carried away.
“But with him walking out you could say it brought the team together. Gary is a great fella and the things he did for me before he left were absolutely fantastic and I owe him a lot.
“Obviously Terry has stepped in and he’s brought in Brabs (Gary Brabin) and Dawesy (Ian Dawes) from the youth team and they’ve been outstanding. The lads are all proud of what we’ve done.
“This year, compared to last year, there’s a lot more togetherness in the squad. We’ve got a great mixture and we’ve got lads with a point to prove, even myself.
“I want to prove I can still play at a higher level but I also want to help this team get as high as possible.”