New squad's chance to impress Blackpool supporters

Blackpool fans will get to see their first glimpse of Gary Bowyer's new-look squad today when they meet Nantwich Town and Port Vale.

Saturday, 21st July 2018, 7:00 am
Joe Dodoo is backed to impress after joining Blackpool on loan from Rangers
Joe Dodoo is backed to impress after joining Blackpool on loan from Rangers

Today marks the first of Blackpool’s games which are open to the public after three behind-closed-doors game.

They started with a 2-2 draw against Wigan Athletic and beat a youthful Rangers side 2-1 during their training camp in Scotland before beating Burnley 2-0 at their Gawthorpe training ground on Tuesday.

Joe Dodoo and Harry Pritchard – two of 12 summer newcomers – scored the goals against a strong Clarets side that included Ben Mee, Jeff Hendrick, Jack Cork and Sam Vokes.

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Dodoo’s goal was his second of pre-season, and the on-loan Rangers striker is a player that Bowyer is looking forward to seeing.

“We have to go on record to thank Glasgow Rangers for allowing us to bring in Joe Dodoo on a season-long loan,” he said.

“He’s young, he’s hungry and he wants to improve and work hard. He’s got to get games under his belt, score goals and provide assists.

“He’s another one when I spoke to people they spoke highly of him. Anybody that has played in the Rangers-Celtic derbies, that tells you a lot about their mentality.

“So he’s going to bring a mentality to the dressing room that should be really good for us.”

Dodoo is a player that, while predominantly a striker, is capable of playing across the frontline.

Bringing in players with that sort of versatility has been a running theme in Bowyer’s summer recruitment, which he suggests is a result of the club’s budget constraints.

He added: “What I’ve done this season, because we’re aware of the competitiveness of this league in terms of salaries and budgets, we’ve tried to bring players in who are able to play in more than one position which gives you more options for your squad.

“John O’Sullivan and Chris Taylor are two that can play either side from the wings and both can play in the middle of the three.

“Joe can do that on the front line as well. He can play either nine or 10, but he can also play on either wing so he provides us with a lot of options. So I’m delighted we’ve got the chance to work with him.”

Blackpool will continue their pre-season preparations with a first trip to Mill Farm on Tuesday to face neighbours AFC Fylde (7.30pm kick off).

Their last friendly before their League One curtain raiser against Wycombe Wanderers comes at Crewe Alexandra’s Gresty Road, on Saturday, July 28.