What a week it’s been for Blackpool FC. Widely touted as probably the worst team to play in the Premier League, sentiments that were echoed by madcap-turned-serious-manager Ian Holloway who suggested his team would struggle to survive in the Championship, they turned over Wigan in impressive fashion. A team of undervalued and, in most cases, undertalented players gelled together under the stewardship of the man who once said “I’m so unlucky if I fell into a barrel of tits I’d come out sucking my thumb” for a glorious result that sent Blackpool to the top of the Premier League for an hour and a half.
It’s been an incredible journey for Blackpool. Touted as relegation favourites at the beginning of last season, the man who once said “Blackpool’s a bit like me, I’m better looking in the dark and so is Blackpool” led his team of journeymen and loanees to the play-off final and promotion.
As pointed out by the RealFACup in their recent article on Blackpool, the club are adopting an extremely pragmatic approach to their tenure in the Premier League. Yes they might do a Derby and slip out with an embarassing level of points, but they’ll be doing their damnest (under-used word) to ensure they don’t do a Bradford and plummet through the divisions (Benito Carbone says “hi” by the way). Their recent chairman Karl Oyston implemented a wage cap of £10,000 per week. That’s a fairly restrictive wage budget for many Championship clubs, so can they survive in the Premier League?
Most neutrals will hope so, and I certainly hope so as well, but it will be difficult to them. And it’s against the backdrop of fiscal promiscuity so rife in the Premier League (and Championship if you consider teams like Cardiff) that it was sad to hear Oyston voice his disgust with fellow Premier League chairmen and the agents that represent players vying for a move to the Greed Is Good League.
While the news that Oyston has resigned with immediate effect comes as no real surprise, it does highlight the spirit-crushing levels of greed so prevelant in the top tiers of English football (not that this is confined to the English game it must be said). Holloway – who once said “Our performance today would have been not the best looking bird but at least we got her in the taxi” – will have his work cut out to keep Blackpool in the Premier League, but he’s a good manager (no matter what Leicester City fans think) who’s at a club who are the perfect fit for him.
It’s a shame that Karl Oyston felt that he was a lone sane voice in an ocean of financial insanity and greed such that he had to resign, but I certainly hope that the club continue in the same vein and with the same ethos that they’ve approached this season. They still have a massive battle for survival, and their squad is desperately poor, but it would be nice if the league table did more than simply show the richest clubs in descending order.