Different Ball Game For Blackpool
Should Karl Oyston and Co have negotiatied a tie in with Fylde Rugby Club in order to secure the best training facilities for 'Pool?
In June of this year, Blackpool President Valeri Belokon was interviewed by myself for the website, and when asked about training facilities replied: 'Indeed good training facilities are important for the development of the club. We have been working on this issue during the entire season. Together with Simon and Normunds I even visited Blackburn training facilities to get feel of what is needed. We also have discussed about training facilities in last board meeting. We have several options how to proceed, but we have not taken a decision yet.' Yesterday, Fylde Rugby Club announced that they are to build new training facilities for their team adjacent to their ground at The Woodlands, based in Lytham St.Annes. Have BFC missed a trick?
On their website, Flyde stated that: 'Fylde Borough's Development Committee this morning agreed to Fylde RFC's planning proposal to develop their Woodlands Ground. The plans include the building of a floodlit all-weather pitch, improved floodlighting on the training pitch, a training track and the installation of floodlights on the main pitch.'
For those that don't know about the continued redevelopment of The Woodlands, last year the Rugby club rebuilt their clubhouse and bar area, along with relaying all pitches - three in total - around the main pitch used for league games. In addition, a multi-purpose gym was installed. The club are striving for success and despite having a fairly non-existent fan base, continue to develop.
With a new all-weather pitch being introduced (which are multi purpose, ie any sports can be played on them) the club has everything that even a football team would ever want or need.
Two grass pitches which have been recently relayed and are kept in decent condition, a gym, a new all-weather pitch, huge changing areas and eating facilities at lunchtimes - why aren't Blackpool pursuing an interest in this project?
Myerscough College - where The Seasiders have been training - has very well kept football pitches, a canteen, and a gym but despite having an all-weather surface, it isn't a very good one by all accounts, according to a student there. The college is situated in Bilsborrow, near Preston, which is obviously a fair distance from Blackpool, and a pointless commute for players when Lytham St.Annes is on their doorstep in comparison.
My opinion would be that the hierarchy of the football club should have been in contact with Fylde RFC's Chairman, Michael Brennand about sharing the new proposed facilities, in cost as well. We would, I'm sure, have been able to ask for certain other features that Simon Grayson would want for his players.
I predict that Fylde would have welcomed a move with the local football club as it'd boost their reputation and coupled with that, both clubs could have provided incentive schemes for each others supporters.
It remains apparent The Seasiders are yet to make a decision (some skeptics will say that a decision won't be reached) on what to do with regards to a training ground; the fact of the matter is that Squires Gate - despite being redone - isn't good enough, whereas in my view Myerscough is too far for an everyday commute, for a training session only lasting a few hours.
It's not too late, but this option would prove to be too much like common sense for Blackpool Football Club…
Quote of the day: 'I never comment on referees and I`m not going to break the habit of a lifetime for that prat' Ron Atkinson