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Blackburn Rovers blog: Treat Blackpool like Burnley clash
Oh I do like the team beside the seaside,
I do like the team beside the sea,
But when Blackpool come to town
And one of us could go down,
It must be them, not us for the dreaded C.
The dreaded ‘C’ of course is the Championship, formerly known as the Second Division, where Rovers spent a great deal of time when I was in my salad days supporting them.
A new generation of Rovers fans have grown up knowing only the pleasures and pains of following a Premier League team.
If that is to continue, it is vital we increase Blackpool’s prospects of an immediate return to the second tier by beating them on Saturday – or the odds on Blackburn being there next season will shorten dramatically.
Like most football fans, I cheered on the Tangerines as they claimed their place at the top table in that dramatic play-off final against Cardiff last May.
I have admired their refreshing attacking approach as they have ruffled the feathers of many of the big boys this season.
As with most neutrals I’d be delighted if they could survive – but not at Rovers’ expense.
So for this one crucial relegation six-pointer we must treat Blackpool as if they were Burnley, the old enemy.
The Seasiders will have their usual tremendous away support but I have no worries whatsoever that the Rovers fans will more than match them. I expect the atmosphere to be as white hot as against Burnley last season.
The outcome is undoubtedly of more importance. A similar result would be just the ticket.
This weekend’s league break has been more frustrating than most, despite the distractions of the Champions League and FA Cup.
A fortnight’s inactivity after a defeat is not ideal preparation but it’s the same for both teams, and if the players can’t be fired up for this game there is something sadly wrong. Who wants it most will determine who prevails.
At least Burnley’s somewhat surprising home defeat by Millwall last Saturday has diminished the prospects of what all Rovers fans would regard as the nightmare scenario – I don’t need to spell it out!
I’d rather cross swords with Blackpool again in the Premier League, although I suspect that Saturday’s game might turn out to be a “winner takes all” clash.
A victory for Rovers would not mean we were out of the danger zone but it would be a giant step to survival.
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