Terry McPhillips says it wouldn’t be fair to “hammer” his exhausted Blackpool players following their heavy home defeat to Bristol Rovers.
READ MORE: Terry McPhillips' update on Daniels and Howard injuries
The Seasiders suffered their third League One defeat of the season and their second on the bounce, going down 3-0 on Saturday.
The players were clearly tired from the midweek Carabao Cup game at Arsenal, where Blackpool pushed the Premier League giants all the way before eventually being edged out 2-1.
After Wednesday’s cup clash, McPhillips said it was always going to be an uphill task to recover and produce the same level of performance against Bristol Rovers.
“I don’t want to hammer the players,” he said. “Well, I’m not going to hammer them because they’re good lads and they’ve been on a good run.
“Let’s make sense of it. It’s been three tough games in a week (starting with the derby defeat at Fleetwood) and we’ve got to bounce back now and go again.
“If you know football, you know how hard it was going to be.
“They’re not daft, they (Rovers) know it was a great time to play us on the back of Wednesday, with all the travelling.
“I got straight to bed when I got home at about 6am (on Thursday) and I feel tired as do the staff.
“So those lads that have a put a shift in at the Emirates, you’ve just seen how leggy they are. But it’s an honest leggy.
“We knew it was going to be hard and it was. We knew it was going to be a slog and it was.”
Despite admitting tiredness was a major factor in his side’s defeat, McPhillips says Bristol Rovers were the better team on the day.
He added: “To be fair to Bristol Rovers they’re in a false position. They don’t concede many goals and they keep lots of clean sheets, I think that’s five out of their last eight games. We’ve just been beaten by the better team.
“But if anyone knows about football, they’ll know that those three games in a week, Fleetwood leading onto Arsenal, with the travel and recovery, then this, it all adds up. And this is what it equals.
“So we’ll dust ourselves down and we’ll do our best to recover again. We’ll be back in Monday and train and travel down to Gillingham.”
Blackpool are currently depleted by injuries and suspensions, with Paudie O’Connor and Armand Gnanduillet still serving their bans.
Meanwhile Mark Howard, who picked up a thigh injury in the defeat to Arsenal, was replaced by Christoffer Mafoumbi while Donervon Daniels wasn’t fit enough to return.
McPhillips said: “Mark Howard has been superb, hasn’t he? That obviously hasn’t helped us.
“You lose Donervon last week, you lose Armand through suspension, you’re talking about players that have done really well for us.
“We’ve missed all of them but let’s get it right, on the back of the week we’ve had we got what we got against Bristol Rovers.”