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2 fresh dilemmas Neil Critchley will have at Blackpool after weekend clash with Bristol City



A last minute equaliser meant Blackpool’s return to the Championship would start with a hard-earned point against Bristol City.

Championship points can often be won by teams who display fight, desire, and by those sides who can ride the waves of pressure expelled by the opposition.

And in Saturday’s curtain raising tussle at Ashton Gate, it was the side in orange and white that showed they could do just that.

Quiz: Do you remember which player scored Cardiff City’s first goal in each of the last 15 seasons?

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Who scored Cardiff City’s opening goal during the 2006/07 season?

In a game that saw the Robins take a first-half lead courtesy of Chris Martin, and despite exerting most of the attacking pressure, they were left to rue their wasted opportunities in front of goal, as they failed to put the Tangerines to the sword.

And it would be new signing and debutant Shayne Lavery, who joined the Seasiders on a free transfer from Linfield FC in Ireland this summer who would snatch a point from four yards out with seconds to spare in added time.

So with the typically quiet and drama-free opening weekend of the Sky Bet Championship in the books, we explore two potential dilemmas the Tangerines boss may be stewing over.

Lavery to lead the line?

Critchley opted to hand the starting striker’s job to Jerry Yates, who’s 23 goals in all competitions last term meant he finished his debut season at Bloomfield Road as top scorer.

Yates worked tirelessly as ever against the Robins, but was left feeding off scraps for most of the game, as he struggled to make an impact.

But for new boy Shayne Lavery, making an impact is precisely what the Northern Ireland international did. This performance may have convinced some Blackpool fans that Lavery should be handed his opportunity to spearhead the Tangerines attack this season, but has it convinced the former Liverpool youth manager and now current Tangerines boss?

Speaking to The Blackpool Gazette, Critchley said in response to a question about potentially starting Lavery: “It’s a difficult one to say.

“New players take a bit of time to adapt usually, but he looks like he’s settling in very quickly.

“I’m not going to get too carried away because football has plenty of ups and downs, but so far I’m made up for him.”

Wednesday evening’s Carabao Cup tie against Middlesbrough could be an ideal opportunity to hand Lavery his first start, however it will remain to be seen whether Critchley views Lavery as the man to lead the line in the league this season.

Is another right-back required?

As it stands, Blackpool do not possess a natural right-back, which has forced new addition Callum Connolly, a centre-back by trade, to plug the gap on the right.

Connolly, a free-agent acquisition for the Seasiders this summer, performed well given the circumstances against Bristol City, but you would have to imagine that Blackpool boss Neil Critchley will not have signed Connolly to play him there week in, week out.

So in the remaining three weeks of the summer transfer window, you would have to envision a natural right-sided defender will be at the very top of the Tangerines’ shopping list, and most probably with a few frantically scribbled lines in ballpoint pen underneath.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: 2 fresh dilemmas Neil Critchley will have at Blackpool after weekend clash with Bristol City

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