Blackpool’s Lomana LuaLua is available after being dropped for disciplinary reasons
For Blues Liam Ridgewell and Morgaro Gomis face late fitness tests.
The last meeting was earlier this year in the Premier League. Blues took an early lead through Alexander Hleb but then missed a number of chances to extend their lead (Sound familiar?) allowing former Blue DJ Campbell to equalise. Scott Dann scored the winner with a volley in the 89th minute.
Blackpool have moved up to seventh after a decent run of results that has included a 5-0 win at Elland Road. At home they have won five out of eight. Former Blue Kevin Phillips is their top scorer with seven.
Blues win in midweek ended a run of three games without a win and sent them back up to eighth. They have won only two of their seven away games this season.
So who’s idea was it to have a trip to Blackpool at the end of November? That’s an August Bank Holiday fixture if there ever was one. Better than a Tuesday night in January like last season I suppose.
Blues will be travelling there buoyed and somewhat relieved on the back of their late win against Burnley on Tuesday night. It had looked for a while that the recent pattern of failing to take chances and finish games off would continue so Chris Burke’s late winner was really welcome. We are now back challenging for the playoff places and will rise to at least seventh with a win tomorrow. Whatever position we achieve will only be temporary though as there are another round of games we will miss in midweek.
Blackpool are a difficult team to predict as they tend to be a bit inconsistent in terms of results. In recent weeks they have beaten Leeds 5-0 but have also been beaten 4-0 by West Ham and lost at Burnley. At home they have been strong and will prove a tough test. We have lost nearly all the team that played them last time and two of them will be lining up in tangerine tomorrow, Kevin Phillips and Barry Ferguson. Super Kev is still knocking in the goals although he has started from the bench in recent games . I expect at least one of the players we let go to come back and haunt us.
Blues have been playing well recently and I particularly like the contribution of our wide players which includes David Murphy. He is proving to be as much as an asset in attack as defence and it was his run and cross that created Burke’s winner. There has been a bit of discussion recently as to who to start up front but I would stick with Zigic as he will only improve by playing games. If nothing else it will help gather interest for when we sell him in January. The rest of the team should pick itself as I expect most of them will be rested for the trip to Braga. If we can keep Super Kev out then I think a draw will be a decent result.
My prediction 1-1
C’mon you Blue Boys.