Sunderland midfielder Elliot Embleton managed to bag himself a promotion up into the Championship last season during his time on loan at Blackpool, and told Sky Sports the experience of getting promotion was ‘massive’ in terms of helping him with his confidence and experience.
The 22-year old spent last year on loan with the Tangerines, after finding gametime hard to come by with the Black Cats. Given the chance to play on a regular basis, the midfielder thrived and ended up playing in 21 games as the club battled for promotion.
It was a surge towards the top of the table that ultimately paid off – Blackpool won the trophy and sealed at least a season in the second tier.
Instead of looking forward to a campaign of Championship football though, the player instead returned to Sunderland and now has to try and once again try and push for promotion – this time with his parent club.
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Embleton has already made a big impact, having featured in nine league games for the Black Cats so far this season. With two goals and three assists along the way, the Englishman has been highly influential and has been a key reason why Sunderland are currently sat in second place in the third tier.
With the club level on points with first-place Wigan, Embleton spoke out about the ‘strange’ time he had sealing promotion with the Tangerines and how the experience has helped him with his confidence. Speaking to Sky Sports, he said: “It was strange. When I joined Blackpool they were like 15th in the league, and then we had that run of games to get into the play-offs.
“And it was like, ‘are Sunderland going to get Blackpool in the semi-final or the final?’ We just had to see what happened.
“It was a massive thing for me to play in a promotion side in this league. The promotion helped with the confidence. And playing games, that’s what helps to develop you.
“I had a good manager [at Blackpool] who helped develop me tactically, and we had a good run of 16 games unbeaten, so everything was good there.”
The midfielder then is clearly using his experience of sealing a play-off victory and promotion to try and carry his side up and into the top six places themselves.
With the way he is performing – and the way Sunderland have played so far – this season may finally be the year they can do it if they can keep this form up.
Elliot Embleton has certainly broken back into the side at his parent club and made quite an impact. The Black Cats have gotten off to a flying start in League One this year and the 22-year old has been key to the good performances.
Any experience of fighting at the top end of a table is bound to help both the player and the club they are at and it is now clearly paying dividends too. The midfielder knows what it takes in the pressure cooker situations to perform and nab that elusive promotion – and Sunderland can reap the rewards this year.