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Butler Set To Retain Place

Despite Neal Eardley's return from injury and the possibility of him returning at right back on Saturday against Barnsley with Alex Baptiste partnering Ian Evatt at centre back, it appears that on-loan defender Andy Butler will retain his place in the Seasiders starting XI.

Butler, on loan from Huddersfield, has found it difficult to get a run in the side since joining the club in January.

He made his debut in the away draw against Cardiff, but was then dropped for the next game with Ian Evatt and Rob Edwards returning from suspension.

After nearly a month out of the team, he returned for the defeats against West Brom and Sheffield Wednesday before finding himself on the bench again.

However, Rob Edwards' red card saw him thrown into action against Middlesbrough before he played the full ninety minutes against Reading at the weekend.

And it appears that his performance last weekend will see him get a run in the side as he aims to earn a permanent move to Bloomfield Road, having surprisingly fallen down the pecking order at parent club Huddersfield.

Speaking about Butler to the Blackpool Gazette, 'Pool manager Ian Holloway said:

'Andy is a big strong lad. He wasn't getting picked for quite a while at Huddersfield and that is always difficult.

'He came here but I had to leave him out after he played really well at Cardiff.

'I left him out because I didn't think fitness-wise he was up to it.

'But on Saturday he stepped in and it will be difficult to leave him out after that.

'I thought both he and Ian Evatt were absolutely terrific on Saturday, very positive and they dominated their centre forwards.

'We won more headers than they did throughout and that makes you look a good team.'

Holloway also reserved praise for the rest of his defensive unit after their third clean sheet in a row last weekend:

'It isn't just the centre halves. On Saturday Alex Baptiste and Stephen Crainey deserved great credit as well because Reading's two widemen are absolute handfuls.

'I had reports done on them and they had been exceptional in the last few weeks. But my full backs ensured they didn't even get a kick.

'So it's a joint effort with the defence. It's important they are solid as a unit and they've been doing that ever so well lately.'

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

The journalist

Writer: Eamonn Moore  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday February 25 2010

Time: 11:37AM


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