League One Preview- Fleetwood Town vs Blackpool

It is derby weekend for the North West clubs and the Fylde coast will be absolutely brimming with fans on either side looking to get one over on their rival fans. In recent times the contest between Fleetwood Town and Blackpool has become more important with both clubs in the same league and it will be interesting to see if the league positions will make a difference on the pitch.

With Fleetwood Town heading into this game as playoff contenders they should have the edge over 13th place Blackpool who are succumbed to mid table mediocrity after some dreadful results since December. However, the form guide goes out of the window in these sorts of heated affairs and we could be looking at any score.

However, it is well worth noting that Blackpool have only lost once in the previous eight meetings the clubs have had. This is why some Blackpool fans do not see Fleetwood as a derby but you can be sure they will take the bragging rights straight to the workplace on Monday and be lording it over their Fleetwood pals.

Earlier this season, former manager Simon Grayson stated that Joey Barton had made his team talk for him as he spoke in the press about how Fleetwood were the bigger club and Blackpool’s players were not as good as his. Blackpool won 3-1.

This time round it will be completely different with both managers no longer in the dugout. Blackpool will be led by Neil Critchley who will take in his first game for the Seasiders. Whereas Barton, who is still the manager, is suspended due to comments about officials following the Wycombe Wanderers game in February.

For Fleetwood they come into this game with a fantastic defensive record and it will be incredibly tough to break down the defensive pairing of Harry Souttar and Lewis Gibson. With goals coming in ones it could be exactly what they need if they can manage to grab a goal early and defend stoutly against the Blackpool frontline. Having not lost in the past ten games it looks highly unlikely that they will succumb to Blackpool easily.

Blackpool come into the game following two late winners against Bolton Wanderers and Ipswich Town. With caretaker manager David Dunn in charge they have looked more dynamic and players such as Kiernan Dewsbury- Hall and Connor Ronan have shined since arriving in January. The Seasiders have managed to score in seven out of the last eight fixtures but failed defensively to make sure those goals were more important.

Both sides arrive in fairly good form and it should make for a cracker of a match. Will it be the Cod Army or the Tangerine Army who are celebrating come the final whistle?

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