Football Psychology – Blackpool & The X Factor!

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Ian Holloway - Manager, Blackpool FCThe pundits had written Blackpool off. Dismissed them out of hand. Lowest points ever. Relegated by January said ‘expert’ Piers Morgan.

And when you look at the evidence its easy to make these arguments. This is a team that has previously shown no real obvious ambition to be a Premier League team. That is in terms of infra-structure, player recruitment, wages and so on.

So its easy for the pundits to dismiss Blackpool as a lower league team, trying to punch way above their weight.

But that opinion, does not take into account what Blackpool have going for them. And those are the very things that don’t cost money. Things such as team-spirit; belief; trust; desire; attitude; fearlessness; and a cause.

The unseen factors that Ian Holloway has so carefully built, to take Blackpool to where they are. These unseen factors create an energy and enthusiasm that knows no limits. This energy fuels the team, and builds a Twelfth Player. Its what makes the players want to ‘do it’ for each other. Not let the group down. The very things that Wigan Athletic did not have yesterday in their humiliation at the DW Stadium.

The Twelfth Player is invisible to the casual eye. But not to Ian Holloway. That is why he keeps talking about ‘this group of players’. He knows that together they have built something special, that will get even stronger in the Premier League.

Blackpool may not match certain teams in the Premier League for individual ability. But you can be sure that their ‘Twelfth Player’, the combination of the collective, will be a match for everyone. And that is why the ‘experts’ are hasty to write off this spirited group.