Ben Barrett previews the trip to BlackpoolYeovil Town are back in SkyBet Championship action this Saturday and the Glovers travel to Blackpool knowing that Mission Survival is now in its final and most important stages.
Yeovil sit bottom of the Championship following last weekend’s home defeat against fellow strugglers Barnsley.
Now, Gary Johnson has warned that there is no room for another slip up with two other bottom six sides on the fixture list.
Blackpool are one of those sides, the Tangerines are currently 19th in the table, seven points above the drop zone.
The Seasiders will think that a win on Saturday may well be enough to secure safety from the drop, but for Yeovil, the three points could draw them level with Barnsley and within a single victory of Charlton going into the midweek fixture between the two sides.
Blackpool’s form had been one of the worst in the division, going a full 17 games without a victory before a recent upturn.
In the last five games, there have been two victories, two defeats and draw. Most recently, a 1-1 draw against QPR on Saturday with David Goodwillie on the score sheet for ‘Pool.
Their last win was a week prior to that, a 1-0 win over Huddersfield former Premier League striker Ricardo Fuller notching an early goal to take all three points.
Blackpool are in the unusual situation of not having a permanent manager and not intending to appoint one until the summer.
Barry Ferguson has taken the role on in a player/caretaker manager capacity since mid-January when Paul Ince was fired.
Yeovil’s form is actually not all that bad, if you ignore the 4-1 home drubbing by Barnsley last week; three draws in a row, three brilliant performances and three games
with stories to tell preceded the Barnsley defeat.
A dramatic 3-3 draw at Wigan, a 2-2 draw at home to Bolton and then a 1-1 stalemate away at top-of-the-table Leicester. The Glovers will once again be looking to on loan striker Ishmael Miller to fire them to victory, without a goal in a couple of games he will be looking to take a few tips from an unlikely source.
Luke Ayling, over 100 appearances before his first goal and now two have come in as many weeks.
The right back scored a last gasp equaliser at Wigan before getting the consolation against Barnsley. With the loan window now closed, neither side have had chance to enhance their squads over the past week.
So it’s all eyes on the injury list to bolster the squads, for the Glovers Ruben Palazuelos could be involved in the travelling party, but a place on the bench might be a bit ambitious.
Gary Johnson has suggested changes may be on the cards for the Glovers as the importance of the game is more evident than ever.
For the hosts, Nathan Tyson won’t be involved after he extended his stay at Notts County but they may include Apostolos Vellios a defender signed from Everton.
Vellios is normally Shane Duffy’s defensive partner at the Toffee’s Under 21 side, but hasn’t made a competitive appearance this season for their first team.
When the two sides met earlier this season a single John Lundstram goal was enough for Yeovil to secure one of their most impressive victories this campaign.
The Tuesday night fixture didn’t go down to well with the ‘Pool boss at the time, as Paul Ince used a certain naughty word to describe the trip to Somerset, the team’s performance and even the goal they conceded.
A Yeovil win would be the first time they have secured a win both home and away against the same side this season. Of course, the two sides have met a number of times in League One.
Since 2005, Yeovil have been defeated twice and got two draws out of the four regular league meetings. Most famously though, the two sides met in the League One Play Off Final in 2007. With Wembley Stadium bathed in green and orange, goals from Keigan Parker and Robbie Williams were enough for Simon Grayson’s men as they gained promotion.
Of course, with Gary Johnson’s rally cry still ringing in the players’ ears, the focus will be entirely going on at Bloomfield Road, but a little glance at the other fixtures at the bottom of the table won’t hurt us supporters.
Charlton host Reading, Barnsley play Brighton, Millwall travel to Nottigham Forest and finally Doncaster and Birmingham meet in South Yorkshire.
Tickets for the fixture are available on the day but for those who don’t fancy a Saturday on the Lancashire coast, there will be full coverage on Glovers Player as well as all the pre and post-match reaction via YouTube and the social networks.