Change of Tack Up Top For Palace?
3rd October 2009
Ian Holloway's Blackpool travel to 14th place Crystal Palace on Saturday desperate to bounce back after their lacklustre defeat at Bristol City.
The Seasiders lost just their second game of the season at Ashton Gate on Tuesday and the manager wasn't pleased with some of the togetherness - or lack of it - shown by senior players during the game.
It was the first time since he began at Bloomfield Road that Ollie has come out publicly to criticise some of his most valued players, including Hameur Bouazza and Ben Burgess.
Looking forward to Saturday's fixture, it presents a decent opportunity for another victory. Selhurst Park was the venue of 'Pool's creditable 1-0 win against Palace whilst down to ten men inside three minutes last campaign.
Sadly the goalscorer that day, DJ Campbell, won't be around to attempt to repeat the trick, but another tricky striker might be worth a shout up front.
Summer signing Billy Clarke has yet to start a league game for the club but has proved to be a valuable asset to bring off the bench. His quick speed and close control have made him a good get out ball for the team whilst we're in the lead. Is it not time that Billy got his chance from the start?
Burgess was lamented for his lack of closing down in the week and for all his aerial ability, he doesn't link well enough with the midfield away from home to warrant a consistent spot in my book.
What Clarke gives you is a willingness to run and after notching his first tangerine goal last week at Stoke, he'll be full of confidence.
Having a quicker striker - who is capable of keeping up with our flying wingers and able to play on the shoulder of the last defender - could benefit the side away from Bloomfield Road where chances are at a premium.
Neil Warnock after their 0-0 draw at home to Sheffield Wednesday:
'We had some good chances but we snatched at everything, we just don't like scoring in the first half.
'We are lacking in quality but I don't think they were any better. I can't fault the lads, they are giving me everything.
'We could not put our chances away, it's as simple as that. But we've got seven points from three games and all credit to the lads for that.'
Ollie after Tuesday's defeat at Bristol City: 'I don't think we turned up in the first half.
'I think we thought we were a good team and we had earnt the right to moan at anyone if they didn't pass the ball properly.
'We were peppering their goal late on but couldn't hit a cow's backside with a banjo.
'When I brought Ben Burgess off I didn't like his reaction but that's all behind us now.'
Crystal Palace Team News:
Likely line up:
Speroni, Hill, McCarthy, Fonte, Butterfield, Carle, Ambrose, Danns, Moses, N'Diaye, Lee.
Player to watch: Victor Moses
18-year-old Moses has been a revelation since breaking into the Palace squad two years ago.
The midfielder was an integral part of Palace's team last season and has attracted the attention of Wigan. He'll be sure to give Stephen Crainey a tricky time.
In a remarkable story, Moses moved to England when he was 11 after the murder of his parents back home in Nigeria and is now making a name for himself in English football.
Blackpool Team News:
It's extremely unlikely that any of the currently injured players (the GTF's, Demontagnac's...) are even in full training so the squad should look the same to Tuesday.
It will be interesting to see if Marcel Seip gets his first game in tangerine, especially after seeing the first goal where Rob Edwards certainly didn't cover himself in glory.
Even though I've hinted above that Holloway may want to change things up front, the liklihood is that either Euell or Burgess will lead the line as usual.
Player to watch: Charlie Adam
The centre midfielder will be bouyed after his international call up today. He has however been suffering with fitness - and a bit of form - in the last couple of fixtures.
Up against the likes of Nick Carle and Darren Ambrose, it'll be interesting to see if Adam takes physical charge of the middle.
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Saturday 17th October.
Plymouth Argyle (H)