Vital Football

Latest Blackpool FC News

Abel's Vital View - Blackpool versus Watford

Abel's Vital View - Blackpool versus Watford

A broken down hearse. My dad watching 'Custer`s Last Stand` on TV. Thunder rumbling on the horizon. The signs weren`t exactly brilliant regarding the Seasiders chances of finally hauling themselves to Championship safety on Sunday.

Arriving at Bloomfield Road, I half expected to see vultures circling. Instead what I saw was one final great effort from the boys in tangerine, securing Championship football again next season with points to spare.

Pardon me for using an oft used expression, but it truly has been a rollercoaster of a season, not just for ourselves, but for every club in the division - a fact reflected by the sheer number of fans listening intently to their radios or checking the internet on their phones on Sunday.

As it turned out though, Simon Grayson`s warriors weren`t left to rely on other results as they got the point that they required for safety with a committed display against a Watford side who, on their recent form, will require something Houdini esque to return to the Premiership via the playoffs.

Ben Burgess calmed Blackpool nerves in the second minute, pouncing on some slack Watford defending to fire home from close range. It was the target man`s tenth goal of the season, although doubts remain whether he`s consistently good enough for this division or not.

After Danny Shittu had somehow managed to burst the ball, Joe Martin perhaps should have put the Seasiders 2-0 up, but the man on loan from Spurs, making his debut, could only direct his header at Hornets stopper Richard Lee. The young man (presumably selected primarily because of his height) acquitted himself well and many would like to see him back at Bloomfield Road again next season.

At the other end, Paul Rachubka brilliantly denied Tommy Smith and Darius Henderson. There is no doubt that Rabs is an extremely agile keeper capable of pulling off such wonderful stops, but his inability to command his area (especially at set pieces) is an area of huge concern and there is little doubt in my mind that Simon Grayson will be looking to bring in another goalkeeper over the summer.

Wes Hoolahan, possibly playing his last game in tangerine, nearly gifted Watford an equaliser in the opening minutes of the second half before somewhat redeeming himself at the other hand with a drive that just fizzed wide. Wes is the most skilful player I have seen play for this club, and will be a big loss should he move on over the summer.

Stephen McPhee then hit the post, before Watford`s Darius Henderson was given his marching orders for elbowing Kaspars Gorkss. However, the Seasiders let the Hornets back into the game just seconds later; Tommy Smith striding forward before slotting home.

Claus Jorgensen cleared off the line, before, with both sides realising that a draw suited both sides, time wasting tactics ensued; Paul Rachubka standing with the ball at his feet unchallenged for what seemed like a lifetime. With the referee seemingly realising that there was no point in continuing the game, the final whistle was blown.

There is no doubt that keeping Blackpool in the Championship is a huge achievement for Simon Grayson, his staff and players. However, the hard work begins now. All too often we see clubs suffer from 'second season syndrome`. It is vitally important that we do our up most to retain the services of the likes of Hoolahan and Gorkss, as well as strengthening the squad suitably; the division looks like it will be a lot tougher next season, and Grayson must be ruthless in his wheeling and dealings.

To progress further on the pitch though, the club needs to progress off the field too. The South Stand being built is the obvious starting point, but the training ground needs improving tremendously as well if we are to establish ourselves at this level.

A vitally important summer in the future of Blackpool Football Club awaits, let`s hope that nobody is found wanting.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Join the Vital Fantasy Football League - its Free!

Date:Wednesday May 7 2008
Time: 7:37PM

Best of Vital Network

Vital Boxing - Bellew Wants Lebedev Next


excellent assessment and let's hope second season syndrome stays away from the seaside!
07/05/2008 20:07:00
That stadium of yours is fabulous
14/05/2008 20:41:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Blackpool Articles

Vital Pre-Match - League 2, 22nd October

The 2016-17 season continues with the latest round of matches this weekend, which will see us among those having a match in this upcoming schedule with three-points the aim of course.

Match Day Officials v Doncaster (22/10/16)

The Football League have now announced the Match Day officials that will take charge of the game against Doncaster Rovers this Saturday.

FA Cup First Round Proper - Full Draw (17/10/16)

The draw for the first round of the FA Cup took place earlier this evening.

Late Frustration For Bowyer

Manager Gary Bowyer has been speaking about his frustration following the loss to Accrington Stanley at the weekend.

Archived Vital Blackpool Articles

Vital Blackpool articles from

Site Journalists

Write for Vital Blackpool
Write For Vital Blackpool
Apply Here

Current Poll (see more polls)

Blackpool v Doncaster
Suggested By:
Blackpool win100%
Doncaster win0%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Plymouth 13 9 2 2 29 10
2 Doncaster 13 8 2 3 26 10
3 Carlisle 13 6 7 0 25 9
4 Luton 13 6 4 3 22 9
5 Portsmouth 13 6 3 4 21 7
6 Grimsby 13 6 2 5 20 1
7 Accrington 13 5 4 4 19 1
8 Crewe 13 4 7 2 19 0
9 Crawley 13 5 4 4 19 -1
10 Morecambe 13 6 1 6 19 -6
11 Mansfield 13 4 6 3 18 1
12 Notts County 13 5 3 5 18 0
13 Colchester 13 4 4 5 16 -1
14 Hartlepool 13 3 7 3 16 -2
15 Yeovil 13 5 1 7 16 -6
16 Wycombe 13 4 3 6 15 -3
17 Blackpool 13 3 5 5 14 2
18 Stevenage 12 4 2 6 14 -2
19 Cheltenham 13 2 7 4 13 -2
20 Exeter 13 4 1 8 13 -5
21 Cambridge 13 3 4 6 13 -6
22 Leyton Orient 13 3 3 7 12 -4
23 Barnet 12 2 6 4 12 -6
24 Newport 11 1 4 6 7 -6
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Blackpool Results (view all)

Blackpool Fixtures (view all)

Oct 22 2016 3:00PM : Doncaster Rovers (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Oct 29 2016 3:00PM : Cheltenham Town (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Nov 12 2016 3:00PM : Notts County (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Nov 19 2016 3:00PM : Leyton Orient (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Nov 22 2016 7:45PM : Mansfield Town (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Nov 26 2016 3:00PM : Newport County (H)
Sky Bet League Two

Vital Members League Table

2.premier 1155
8.Albert Ramsbottom19
Vital Football Comment