Blackpool’s season suffered another setback on Tuesday night, as they lost 2-1 to a resurgent Tranmere Rovers at Bloomfield Road.
Goals from Morgan Ferrier and James Vaughan gave Tranmere a 2-0 lead at half time in the North-West derby, and although Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall managed to pull one back for Blackpool just before the hour mark, it ultimately wouldn’t be enough to secure them anything from the game.
As a result, while Tranmere have now enjoyed three straight wins in their battle for survival, the Seasiders have now won just three of their last 16 league games, giving those around the club much to think about going forward.
Here, we take a look at three things we learnt about Blackpool from that defeat to Tranmere.
A rude awakening for Neil Critchley
As home debuts go, this is exactly the sort of one that newly appointed Blackpool manager Neil Critchley will have wanted to avoid.
Following a goalless draw in the Fylde-coast derby at in-form Fleetwood in his first game in senior management at the weekend, a home match against a side battling relegation could have been the perfect opportunity to get a first win on the board early in his time at Blackpool.
The fact he was unable to do that will undoubtedly have been disappointing for Critchley, who with just one point from a possible six so far, ought to already be learning quickly about the challenges of managing day in and day out at this level.
Their season may be all but over already
With that result against Tranmere, it seems as though Blackpool’s season is already starting to draw to a close without much of a flash at either end of the table.
Following Tuesday night’s match, Blackpool sit 13th in the League One table, 14 points adrift of the play-off places, and 13 clear of the relegation zone, where ironically, the team closest to pulling themselves to safety is indeed Tranmere.
As a result, with just nine games of their season to go, it would likely take either a monumental effort or collapse for Blackpool to find themselves in a battle at one end of the table or the other, meaning it could be a rather quiet end to the campaign at Bloomfield Road.
Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall may not be back next season
Not for the first time since his arrival on loan from Leicester City in the January transfer window, one of the few positives for Blackpool on Tuesday night, was the continuing rise of Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.
The 21-year-old midfielder fired in a stunning strike to give his side some hope in the game, meaning he has now scored four goals and provided one assist in just ten appearances in all competitions since his arrival, although that may not necessarily be an entirely positive thing for Blackpool.
Given the extent of his impact in such a short period of time, you feel that come the summer, parent club Leicester will at the very least be keen to see Dewsbury-Hall playing at a higher level than League One, in order to test his ability as much as possible.
Consequentially, with Blackpool looking likely to embark on another campaign in the third-tier next season, it seems their chances of another deal for the exciting young midfielder could already be falling.