Blackpool v Chelsea – Deep & Counter

Blackpool v Chelsea – Deep & Counter
“We are going to try to keep our defence a little deeper, bring the midfield a little deeper, and then hopefully counter-attack them”. Ian Holloway. Ian Holloway had made no secret of his plan prior to the game and for the most part it worked well, however, individual errors in defence and poor movement from his forwards ensured that chances created weren’t clear cut as Chelsea controlled large parts of the match and deserved their comfortable win. Setting Up Blackpool had a selection dilemma ahead of the game with Charlie Adam and DJ Campbell both...

Blackpool 3 – 1 Spurs

Blackpool 3 – 1 Spurs
Spurs came to Bloomfield Road fresh from their Champions League excellence, whilst Ian Holloway had ten days to work with his squad since the draw with Aston Villa. Both managers faced selection dilemmas due to injuries to key personnel. However, it was the in-game changes that held the key to this game as Blackpool rode their luck to secure the three points. Setting up Had Blackpool set up in their more familiar 4-2-3-1 system then they may well have enjoyed the kind of success they’ve had against other teams who play 4-4-2, playing between their lines as...

What's in a pass – Revisited

What's in a pass – Revisited
Back in January this blog took a look at the passing of Blackpool and the role that it plays in their overall game plan. Then Blackpool were on 25 points and 8 games later they have only mustered up further 4 points. This decline is on the radars of the mainstream media and the following clichés are being warmed up; ‘the honeymoon is over’ and ‘running out of steam’. However, can a focus on Blackpool’s passing help to understand more about why Blackpool have only clocked up 4 points from a possible 21 in their last 8 games? The...

Dissecting the defence

Dissecting the defence
Blackpool’s first season has been characterised by attacking football as the Tangerines have found goals relatively easy to come by. However, it is their defence that regularly comes under scrutiny and more so since their run of five defeats after the Liverpool victory. This post will look at the Blackpool defence and explore as many facets of it as possible in order to establish what is behind Blackpool’s defence and where have things been going wrong? Facts & Figures Blackpool have conceded 49 goals at an average of 1.96 per game. It has been well...

Clinical Deficiencies – Everton v Blackpool

Clinical Deficiencies – Everton v Blackpool
Louis Saha gave a masterclass in clinical finishing either side of Blackpool clinically punishing two mistakes made by Everton players. However, it was a double defensive substitution by Ian Holloway that failed to snuff out Everton’s attacks that swung the game back in David Moyes’ favour. Setting Up The opening play saw Holloway pitting his 4-3-3 against the 4-1-4-1 of David Moyes, who had Marouane Fellaini in the holding role in a system that had stifled Blackpool earlier in the season at Bloomfield Road. James Beattie started in the front three,...

The lost fluency – Blackpool v West Ham

The lost fluency – Blackpool v West Ham
West Ham outworked Blackpool in the central area of the pitch to record a deserved victory as Ian Holloway shuffled his team selection which ultimately appeared to disrupt the fluency that they have found at many stages this season. Setting up  4-3-3 v 4-4-2, West Ham’s Obinna being the player who drifted the most from either side. This was a clear 4-3-3 v 4-4-2 battle and for the first time this season Blackpool were undone by a flat and very plain 4-4-2 with few defining features. There was two clear reasons for this. 1. Mark Noble and Scott Parker worked hard...