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Match Previews


27 February 2015

“We’re both scrapping and battling; it’s going to be tough.” – Malky Mackay.

  • Latics head to Blackpool on Saturday in the Sky Bet Championship.
  • Mackay braced for battle, but encouraged by Cardiff display.
  • Barnett back in squad, as Clarke recovery continues.
Speaking ahead of this weekend’s Sky Bet Championship clash with Blackpool at Bloomfield Road, Latics’ boss Malky Mackay said he’s expecting a scrap on an ‘unforgiving’ surface, but that his players will take the disappointment of the nature of Tuesday’s defeat to Cardiff City as something to build on.


“I thought we played pretty well on the night especially on the pitch that we had.  Cardiff were in our box just the once, which came from mistakes by two or three players who allowed the goal to happen.

“Other than that we pressed them well, we scored two goals that were given offside, but in hindsight they look as though they should both have been given.

“We also made their goalkeeper make a couple of great saves and we gave it a good go.  Coming off the back of the performance, we’ve got to take ourselves into the Blackpool game with the same frame of mind.

“We’ll look to use the disappointment of the nature of the result and take it to Bloomfield Road with us to build on.”


“Blackpool are a team who have been involved in some incredible results recently.  The 4-4 draw with Nottingham Forest shows they have a lot of battling qualities and that’s what I would expect with a Lee Clark side.

“There’s no doubt it’s going to be a tough game, the pitch is probably going to be similar if not worse than what ours was on Tuesday, so we know it’s going to be uncompromising and we’re going to need extra concentration.

“We’re both scrapping and battling for points down at the bottom, so I’ve no doubt it’s going to be a tough encounter.

“It’s a local game for us which ensures we’ll have plenty of supporters over there.  It’s going to be a great atmosphere, both sets of supporters desperately want three points and we want to make sure it’s ours who head home the happiest.”


“We’ve managed to get a couple of players back in the frame.  Leon Barnett has trained the last couple of days so he’ll come back into the squad and Leon Clarke has been feeling much better.

“It’s been a miraculous recovery for Leon, because at first it seemed as though there might have been a crack in his shoulder blade, but a second scan revealed there was no fracture.

“The soft tissue injury and the bruising has gone down and he’s feeling confident enough to begin running on the training pitch.

“We’ll see how Leon is over the next day or so, but we’re delighted to have him back involved and we’ll be very happy to welcome him back soon.  It might not be this weekend, but hopefully he’s not far off.”

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