Preview: Blackpool vs Swansea City

Neil Critchley’s Blackpool side know if they want a late charge at the Championship play-offs, they have to keep doing what they have done in their previous two fixtures – win.

They face Swansea City at Bloomfield Road on Saturday as they look to extend an unbeaten run to three games.

In their previous game, the Tangerines scored late on to win 1-0 at Stoke City courtesy of a Josh Bowler strike.

Critchley’s side are nine points off the play-offs with 11 games remaining this season.

The Swans come into the fixture on the back of a 5-1 home defeat to table toppers Fulham on Tuesday night, having played over an hour with ten men following Ryan Manning’s dismissal.

On Russell Martin’s sides last trip away from South Wales, they recorded a 2-0 victory against West Brom

Blackpool’s injury list looks increasingly better in contrast to last weekend with only Grant Ward (achilles) and Chris Maxwell (thigh) out for the visit of the Swans.

Experienced defender Richard Keogh (calf) is a doubt.

Richard Keogh of Blackpool during the Sky Bet Championship match between Blackpool and Fulham at Bloomfield Road on September 11, 2021 in Blackpool, England. (Photo by Joe Prior/Visionhaus)

Blackpool have scored in their previous 13 Championship games – which is the current best in the league.

From the Swans perspective, this season is at danger of fizzling out.

A win here wouldn’t prompt a late promotion push, but they’re far enough away from relegation to have any form of concern.

After back-to-back play-off campaign failures, it’s been a less dazzling season under Martin, but one they can come out with belief and excitement for the future under the Brighton-born gaffer.

The Welsh side are without midfielder Hannes Wolf, but other than that it’s a full fit squad at Russell Martin’s disposal.

Hannes Wolf of Swansea City in action during the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Swansea City at then Hawthorns on February 28, 2022 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Athena Pictures/Getty Images)

Jack Potter, a member of the Blackpool Fans Trust spoke about this weekend’s fixture.

“We’re confident, we’ve won 10 home games this season and Swansea don’t travel well”, said Potter.

“We’ve had a decent season and although we don’t expect to hit the play offs, a nice run towards the end of the season would be enjoyable.

“The reverse fixture was a draw and we equalised late on, but to be honest we got away with one.

“I think we will win and if Bowler and (Gary) Madine are both starting, we fancy ourselves against anyone.”

A win is crucial if the Seasiders are to keep their top-six hopes up this season, but the visit of the Swans will be a stern test for Critchley and his men.